Before we begin, I actually want to say a little something about the word “resolutions.” I generally hate the term. I don’t know (nor do I want to take the time to research) when it became necessary to cast a dark shadow over your New Year’s Eve drunk with the idea that come the following morning YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand the symbolism. “New Year…New You.” The concept was just made for marketing gym memberships and Jenny Craig dinners. What most of us fail to recognize is that every day we are fortunate enough to open our eyes, we are offered the opportunity for change. It’s just a question of turning on our desire to do so.
Therefore, going forward I won’t be referring to my 12 changes as “resolutions,” or “commitments,” “promises,” “pledges” or friggin “intentions.”
One simple action is all that it takes (how is that for some new agey, self-help bullshit!?!)
My first “life switch” is to get back into the gym schedule I was rocking when my body didn’t feel like a pair of opaque tights filled with warm pudding.
At my height I was doing at least 5 hours of serious cardio a week, plus 2 to 3 strength-training sessions at 45 minutes, and rounding out the insanity with roughly 3 yoga or pilates sessions a week.
Then I quit my job and no longer had the luxury of spending eleventy billion dollars to feel inadequate and unattractive in a room full of metal, machinery, finance douchebags, and the communication majors who love them. For quite sometime I was able to stay somewhat in shape by working out in my apartment and running through town.
The spiral of shame began when I started graduate school. My days were no longer my own. Eating healthy, if at all, became a problem for me. My home workouts ended when my family and I moved into an apartment the size of an elephant’s taint, and I was usually too exhausted or busy to run on the weekends.
I gained and lost the same 5 pounds for a good year. Then all of a sudden the losing stopped following the gaining.
This became apparent when I dug out a pair of Michael Kors jeans that I’ve had for a few years now. I bought them when I first started getting serious about fitness.
I lurved them.
The denim was quality. They were the perfect dark wash. They sat just right on my waist, and the boot cut made my legs look great.
They also had the initials, MY initials, MK etched on the ass…how cool is that!?!
I used these jeans as a barometer for my success. If they were loose, it was time to celebrate. Fit? It may be time to throw in an extra cardio session. For the longest time I relegated these jeans to the bottom of my denim pile because they were way too loose to be worn.
When I pulled them out recently…they were snug.
MICHAEL KORS WHY HATH THOU FORSAKEN ME!?!
Oh, who am I kidding. CHIPOTLE, WHY HATH THOU FORSAKEN ME!?!
It was clear that my wavering between hyper-busy grad student, and depressed puddle of ooze living for her next trip to Pinkberry had its toll.
The fact that I’m not in my 20’s anymore doesn’t help either.
Oh to have the wisdom I lacked when those jeans were collecting dust. I was so hypercritical of myself then. All of the work I put into being healthy and here I am starting from a big ol’ flubbery scratch.
In the past I’ve been fortunate enough to have my body respond to exercise without much change to my diet. I mean I was in the best shape of my life at a time that Tuesday wasn’t Tuesday if it didn’t include 4 glasses of Pinot Noir and a shared plate of nachos (DON’T JUDGE ME.)
Now that my life is much less motivated by Happy Hour (yes, in reverence it deserves to be capitalized), I am hoping that getting back into a regular workout routine will be the impetus for the overall change I wish to see in my body.
This doesn’t mean that I am going to continue to let my diet go to shit and hope that I can just sweat it off on the Stairmaster, but everyone needs to start somewhere, and I figure that physical activity is a damn good place to start.
Saturday will be the end of my first full week of new gymness, so expect a rundown of just what my plan of action is, how I am doing, and what my next steps will be.
(HINT: If you don’t see an entry by Sunday, I probably keeled over and died.)
In the mean time, if you’re looking to get back into, or start, your own fitness regimen, go for it! Remember, one simple action is all that it takes. So, turn off the interwebs and take a walk in this gloriously mild weather that is in no way thanks to climate change at all. It may just be habit forming.