Fit Happens

Do you ever get emotional and write an email to someone, really letting them have it, pouring out your feelings, venting your frustrations, then before hitting “send” you realize you feel better just from writing it? So you close the email without saving, without sending, and feel energized and satisfied?

Yeah, me neither. I always send it. Such is the case with this blog post. It’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about. Writing it felt really good. I feel energized from the thought process. I feel better from the process of getting the thoughts out. I feel like I shouldn’t hit “send”, but I’m going to anyway. Because that’s how I am.

*****

Alright, y’all, do you ever have an epiphany and it’s so ridiculous that you’re embarrassed to even admit that you didn’t realize it all along? No? Just me? (LiaR!)

As you know, I’m trying to lose a few inches around the midsection. I used to be in pretty great shape. You  know, when I was 20… sixteen years ago. I had amazing metabolism, could eat Oreos for dinner and never gain an ounce. I was so lucky!!! Lucky? Oh yeah, did I mention that I also worked out 5-6 days a week? No? So, perhaps it wasn’t luck after all.

From age 20 to about 25, I was a total gym rat. My gym cost $90 a month, and on my entry level salary, this was a huge commitment. I needed to make the most of my financial commitment, so I went to the gym at 6 AM every morning before work and at least one day of the weekend. I ran, swam, or cycled almost every day followed by a strength session. I alternated daily between arms, legs, and abs, so as not to overuse any muscle group.

The notable thing is, I did all of this out of sheer enjoyment. I loved it. I didn’t go to the gym to be thin. I went because it was fun. I was never an atheletic person. I was miserable at anything that required coorindation. I am not a fast runner, swimmer, or cyclist. I simply enjoyed doing it.

Somewhere along the way, this all stopped. I took a new job with a long commute. I fell in love and got married. I went through two pregnancies. Now I have two beautiful children. All of these things make it harder to find time to exercise. Harder, but not impossible. The fact is, with conflicting priorities, I didn’t enjoy it as much. I’d rather help my kids get ready in the morning than go to the gym. I’d rather hang out with my husband in the evening than go to the gym. And frankly, I’d rather get a good night’s sleep than go to the gym.

So, I was thinking about all of this last week and something occurred to me. Without realizing it, I’d given up on myself. I started making excuses. I don’t have time. My metabolism has changed. I’ve had two kids and my body has changed.

I started focusing on being thin. Could I ever be in great shape again? Could I ever have flat, firm abs again? Should I eat this? Should I restrict that?

I need to get back to the point where I go to the gym every day because I love it. Thin happens. Fit happens. It starts by loving the process. It starts by making a commitment and finding joy. It starts by focusing on feeling good rather than looking good.

So I’ve been on a roll this week. On 5/7 I walked a 5k. On 5/9, I did 20 minutes of spinning then full-body strength training. On 5/10, I did 20 minutes of spinning then ab work. On 5/12, I did the stair climber followed by an intense arm workout. On 5/13 (today!), I did 20 minutes on the elliptical.

I can’t say that I’ve found my way back to that place from my 20s already, where I exercised out of joy and happiness. But I think I can get there.

*****

Now, it’s Friday night and I don’t want to part ways on such a serious note. I just got finished watching Taylor Swift on Ellen, and their little skit in the beginning  seriously had me laughing so hard. Squint! Try to get the straw! Don’t get in the puddle! You’re angry! You’re so angry that you’re pretty! You’re pretty and you’re angry about it!

You have to watch it.

Okay, did you watch it? If not, seriously, WATCH IT. I’m not kidding.

Okay, did you watch it? Good.

 

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31 Responses to Fit Happens

  1. I watched it! Hilarious! “It’s made with diamonds…and magic.” I love Ellen. Working out is really hard, especially when you have a family. As Moms, we tend to put everyone’s needs ahead of our own and then realize that we aren’t taking care of ourselves. I miss out on family dinner time almost every night so I can go to the gym. I hate that. I would so much rather sit at the dinner table and be with my husband and son….well, and eat the food because I’m hungry, but you get the point. I do love going, but getting there is hard and it’s the most challenging part. You’re doing great – keep it up!

    • Christine says:

      Yes! The diamonds and magic line was so cute! That T-Swift, I just love her.

      You miss dinner for the gym? Augh, what a huge sacrifice. My husband doesn’t get home in time for the kids’ dinner, so me missing it isn’t even an option. The whole thing sucks. Why aren’t there more hours in the day? Or why can’t we cut our work days down to 6 hours?

  2. bahahahahaha that was hilarious.

    and i loved your post! 🙂 it definitely needs to be about enjoyment… I’ve been avoiding the gym like the plague because I got far too obsessive about it in the fall and developed a horribly negative relationship wtih it but now I”m using it more to train for a half-marathon, and when I finally made it back to the gym today I actually ENJOYED it. Imagine that. 🙂


    n

  3. I’m gonna come back and watch it when the hubs isnt over my shoulder – he’ll tease me! hehehe!

    I totally understand how you fell off the I LOVE WORKING OUT bandwagon! I have too! and I miss it so much… Its time to nix the excuses and love our workotus! =) you’re so motivating! mwah!

  4. Hannah says:

    Seriously, thank you for the link! When I was still a student and lived at home, I’d record Ellen everyday (it’s on at noon here) and then watch it later with mum. She was kinda my god. Now that I don’t have a recording device and work full time, I never get to watch, and it makes me sad 😦

  5. I’ve actually enjoyed going to the gym recently- for the first time ever! I’m really burnt out on running for now, so it’s nice to do something else for a change. The only reason I’m able to work out almost every day is because I work part time… if I had a full time job, I would never be motivated to go!

  6. lindsay says:

    LOL!!!! I am peed myself. Hilarious! and Yes, you making your way back ot FIT, one day at time. And thats all you need to focus on, just that day!

  7. Olivia says:

    I’ve actually done exactly what you did and wrote up a huge long email AND clicked send…and the next morning I was FILLED TO THE BRIM with regret and felt absolutely awful to the person I’d sent it to…(all cleared up now though, thankfully!) anyway, I truly believe you’ll get back to that gym lovingness again soon, I feel the same way, I exercise because I LOVE it not to be thin…god help me, i’m already so thin! But I truly love working out and going on runs and all that good stuff. Hope you can find your way back into the wagon-maybe try a new mag. while on the elliptical for a good 40 min? that makes me so happy!

  8. Now that you’ve had that epiphany, you’re already on your way to getting back on track! You can do it – you’ve obviously done it before. I worry about this exact thing happening to me after I get married and have kids. I say that I’m going to keep my same 6-day a wk. schedule, but I’m not sure how realistic that is. I don’t want the gym to be my life, after all. But congrats on getting in all those workouts this week – it’s such a great start!!

    That Ellen clip was hilarious! My fiance was watching it with me and I saw him smiling…he’d never admit, though!

  9. Yes, I think the key to sticking with any work out program is doing something you enjoy. Doesn’t matter what it is – as long as you have a good time doing it, you’re more likely to stick with it and see results! Perhaps walks with your family would allow you to kill two birds with one stone :).

  10. Allie says:

    GREAT post! You had a good epiphany 🙂 .. do what you love and it won’t seem so hard! You are AWESOME !

  11. Missy says:

    YES!!!! More you time and DO NOT feel gulity it makes you a better mom and yes you know all this.
    Just keep staying in that place where it is for YOU and not your waistline and calories and all that.

    As for the video? You had me at Ellen. I SOOOOO love her. I like T Swift, too. As if she doesn’t already squint, trot and pucker. Se is such a good sport, though. Kanye could have sent any other pre-teen to rehab with his stunbt.
    I’m surprised the fan didn’t blow her down, though, heehehee * cough* jealous.
    Yes, you may have grown in your body with all that LIFE happening but that is such an amazing thing, the LIFE!

  12. Priyanka says:

    Girl you have a great attitude and your motivation to bring that change inspires me. Do you try home dvds?

    Ellen is the funniest lady ever. I was laughing so hard, my husband asked me what is wrong with me, when there is a serious documentary about sun’s power going on, on TV.

    • Christine says:

      Thank you, Priyanka. I don’t usually figure that my writing inspires anyone, but it’s nice to hear it. I have a few DVDs but I don’t really like to work out that way. I love the gym, though, the whole atmosphere, the variety, the options.

  13. Christine, I LOVE this post! You’re so right that when we’re younger we tend to think that being thin or fit or whatever is simply the most important thing in the world. Then life happens and we realize there are so many joys to experience and so many things we have to attend to.

    I love that you’re focusing on health and enjoyment that is so key. Kudos to you! 🙂

  14. You’re so right about the sleep thing, though, eh? Sleep is good. GO SLEEP. YEAH.

    The rest will all fall into place. 😉

  15. I did watch it and well.. its hilarious! I love Ellen. I can’t wait until the summer so I can watch her every day at 3! Honestly, that’s one thing that I look forward to about the summer – watching Ellen and The Price is Right. Am I 80?

    I loved this post – and I don’t always press “send”. I’m a “it felt good to write it” kind of person! 🙂

  16. Kate says:

    Great post, in the past I have gone through workout phases where I love it and then hate it, but I have just gotten past the whole workout to be thin thing and more about health and it comes so much easier now. Plus there is no pressure to be perfect if I miss a day I miss a day!

  17. I’m so happy you’ve posted this! Focusing on feeling good rather than looking good, that’s exactly it! 😀

  18. Hahah! So funny!!

    I definitely think if going to the gym/working out starts to become fun again for you, then not only will those inches come up but you’ll be glowing from the inside out! I know you can do it!

  19. Panda says:

    I was the same way – all through my 20’s I spent two to three hours a day in the gym. Now after having a baby I never have time to go. I am not overweight or anything, just lazy! 😛

  20. haha, I saw that episode of Ellen when it aired – it was hilarious!
    I totally do the same thing about sending the e-mails…I can’t hold myself back sometimes!

  21. It sounds like you are doing great! Don’t be so hard on yourself! The glory days of our youth before kids when we had all the time in the world. And then BAM! Children happen and all of your precious time vanishes. It’s not an excuse that your tired, it’s life, and sometimes there just isn’t eenough hours in the day to exercise. That is unless you have a personal assistant, nanny, personal chef, and limo driver…

  22. Girl, I love your openness and honesty! And I’m excited for you getting back in the “gym world” because I’m sure its hard as your priorities are changing. But think of what an amazing example you’ll be setting for your family! Keep it up!

  23. I loved this post. I am glad you hit “send”:). Even though I am not a mom yet, I already have noticed that I have moved from being a teenager who never really thought about my weight and ate whatever I wanted (my friends on the track team and I would have sleepovers and buy those giant buckets of ice cream and try and finish one all by ourselves in one sitting:) and ran because I loved it, to someone who is almost always aware of what I’m eating and needing to exercise and wanting to “look good,” etc. I wish it was easier to move back to that better, healthier place, and I’ve been thinking the same thing. You’re not alone in working to get there!:)

    And I did watch the video, and it is hilarious:). I love Ellen!

  24. Ahh, this is something that always will plague me. I really never was a person that could eat whatever I want, but that’s because I only worked out moderately a couple times a week. When they went to the wayside in college, my weight went up like crazy. Since then, I’ve kept a much more balanced healthy lifestyle, but I still have the desire to be thinner or lose a few pounds even at the risk of not indulging…or I do indulge and then feel guilty. Like tonight. Oye!

    We’ve all been there and are here to support….

  25. Kelsey says:

    I’m catching up on blogs, and just wanted to say great post! good for you for getting back into the swing of working out! I’m sure it won’t be easy–I can’t imagine finding the time for anything with kids!! And it’s never easy to get out of a workout rut. I’m currently in one now, but for different reasons. I’ve had an injury and am not running regularly. I think as I begin to heal one of the hardest part will be retraining myself to make time for running again! Especially since I’m going to have to start slowly. When I do have a “bad” run, I try to remind myself that no run is too short or too slow, because it’s better than nothing! That helps me get out there and do my thing. 🙂

  26. that is awesome you are getting back into the swing of things!! I was just like you, I made constant excuses about working out. I now make it a priority but do it when it doesn’t affect my time with the kids…it does go a little into my time with the hubby, but overall it just makes me a happier person so its worth it!

  27. Rach says:

    Love what you write about how you exercised for FUN not because you were working to be thin and I love that you are trying to get back to that mindset. That’s great!!

    Bhaha! “Made with real diamonds and magic”… and the squinting and trotting… all hilarious. I love Taylor Swift! 🙂

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