That's right. Move it! I mean, exercise. Ugh. That's like a super-sized four letter word, right?
Yeah. I know. When you've been sedentary for so long, it's hard to find the motivation to exercise, and then you've got to deal with the pain and discomfort of putting your body into positions and situations it's just not accustomed to. I feel your pain.
No... really I do.
I don't love exercise. Maybe one day I will. But at just under 280 pounds, I am not a fan of it. But, I'm a big fan of what it does for my body and how it makes me feel.
Let's explore. Why do I exercise? Why should you? Now, I'm no trainer. I hold no degree in exercise science. I hold no certifications. But I will tell you just a few reasons why I'm choosing to get over the pain, discomfort, and embarrassment (yes, I do feel embarrassed at my size an inability when I walk into the gym and do my thing around bodies that are more fit and able than mine) of physical activity.
1. When I'm done, I actually feel good. I don't know if it's endorphins or some happy hormone that released, but when I walk out of the gym I feel good. I certainly walk out differently than I walk in. If you can get in the door, that's a major part of the battle right there.
2. I feel proud. Yeah, I "loaded up" my bar with the smallest weights they have (but I put two on each end, thankyouverymuch), but I made it through the entire BodyPump class with just a few minor modifications. Like tricep dips. I'm just not there yet. But I know how to modify them on the step, so that's what I do.
3. I push myself more than I normally would. Today, I rode a stationary bike that looked much like the one pictured above. I rode five miles. At the first mile, it took me just over 5 minutes. I decided I would do two miles, but try to reduce my time and finish the second mile in less than 10 minutes. I missed it by about 20 seconds, so on the third mile I said I wanted to make it under 15 minutes. I got really close. At that point I was getting worn out, but I kept promising myself I'd get under an average of a 5-minute-mile on this blasted thing. So, I said to myself I was going to go five miles. The last mile was hard, but kept pushing. I was literally talking to myself. "OK, you're in your subdivision." Then, "OK, you've made it to the soccer field. Just have to go around it." I was proud to finish up five miles at 24:22. I make promises to myself when I exercise and push myself to not only meet that promise, but as I surpass each little goal I make a new one. I push myself just a little farther. I don't typically do that. This is new territory for me.
4. Yes, I'm sore. My husband just shakes his head and smiles as I hobble about the house. But you know, it's proof that I'm alive. It's proof that I'm working my body. I'm using my muscles as God intended. I'm working on this temple that I've let get completely destroyed by fat. I will have no regrets because I could have exercise and chose to sit on my rump instead.
5. It makes me feel sexy*. Yep, you read that right. Sexy. My husband calls me Sexy, and he has done so for years. He has never known me thin. Ever. He met me overweight, and he continues to love me obese. To him, I'm sexy. But I've never felt it. But when I exercise, (oh please don't laugh) I want to strut around in all my sexiness. OK, laugh. It is pretty funny. But it's true. I feel sexy after I've worked out. That right there feels really, really good. Even though I know what I look like, I still feel sexy.
So, there you have it. Five reasons why I exercise. If you don't exercise, give it a shot. Figure out the personal benefits for yourself. Your reasons may be totally different than mine. That's OK. Really. But seriously, find something you enjoy and get moving. It's worth it. And please, someone remind me of this post when I stumble and just don't feel like doing it. I have to motivate myself every day to get up and do it, even though I know how I'll feel after. I'm still holding out hope that one day it'll get easier. But, I'm gonna keep plugging along and doing it.
*Note: My husband also makes me feel sexy and strong... just not the same way exercise does.