Day 17: 21 Day Fix—Round 2

I ended last night with a journal entry, so I am starting today with a blog post.

Good morning, everyone, and happy Wednesday (which feels like Tuesday—aka my kind of Wednesday). By now, most people are back in the swing of their routines, slowly creeping out of the bitterness that comes with going back to work after the holidays. For me, the transition has been smooth, because we are super busy right now. However, my first full day back at work yesterday came with a real challenge.

That challenge reared its ugly head at 10am. I can’t recall what I went to look at, but I tilted my head slightly to do so. Upon resuming a neutral position, the lag between the time it took for my head to be upright and my vision to match, began it’s slow, dizzying stretch. My vertigo lasted the entire day and night from that point, with constant spinning from 10–4. After 4, it was intermittent, but still happening.

If you’ve been following along, you’ll also know 10:30/11am is around the time I like to do my workouts. I pushed those until noon to see if that would give the vertigo time to subside, but it didn’t. I was faced with a choice: let my condition stop me (after a week of skipping workouts due to the holidays and illness) or accept the challenges and see where it goes. I chose the latter.

Each time I exercise, I need to do so with caution. I get vertigo every day—sometimes in small amounts here and there and sometimes so bad, I’m left with no option but to lay in bed—so exercising cautiously is already part of the routine. However, this was the first time I went into a workout on a medium/bad day—a day when I was already spinning. The workout itself wasn’t actually so bad. I had to work harder to figure out the best way to move my head and eyes, needed to take each new workout slowly until I figured out how much it triggered the spinning, and had to be aware of my surroundings. I stumbled a few times, but it wasn’t debilitating.

But then I had to lay down for crunches.

This, I needed to fight through. I knew I would be laying down, so there was no fear of falling or getting hurt. But I laid there for a second watching the ceiling spin above me, fully understanding this was going to be an experience. But, I did it. I finished the workout, ended up getting sick after the nausea kicked in, and moved on with my day.

Just this morning, I was scrolling through the Vestibular Migraine group I’m part of on Facebook and there was one woman—who has a great sense of humor—who commented that “[she] got fat.” Cue the flood of comments saying the same thing has happened to a ton more people. Now, many seem to feel it’s whichever medication they are on (and I’m taking a natural route, as opposed to medications), but many people, like me, feel unsafe with this condition (and rightly so). I work with it each time I exercise, but have to believe that being active and healthy is only going to make me better.

We all have obstacles when it comes to our health and no two people are exactly alike. I’m sharing this because there is no “one way” to do things and we all have unique needs and challenges. But, just like the exercises themselves, there are modifications you can take with everything. I know I have days when exercising isn’t an option. Like I said, I was constantly spinning for 6 hours yesterday and that was medium/bad—not my worst day. But, on the days I am well enough to exercise, I should.

2018 is a year of great change in our lives and I’m starting right here with my own self. I am putting better things into my body, trying to tune into my needs with more care, and placing my attention on not just my physical health, but my mental health as well. It’s why I’m blogging right now instead of tackling the mound of work I have to do. Living with Vestibular Migraine is part of the package now and I’m ready to keep working at getting healthier with it in tow.

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Day ??: 21 Day Fix—Round 2

Well, that’s not how it was supposed to go.

This week has been a combination of wonderful and horrible, with this past weekend and first two days of the week being the wonderful and beyond those days, the horrible. We had a wonderful Christmas, spent celebrating with loved ones, followed by the ever-adored stomach flu. Both Nick and I were down for the count for 36 hours from Wednesday morning thru Thursday afternoon—don’t worry, I’ll spare you the details, but it was not fun (to say the very least).

Between all the Christmas preparations, Christmas itself (which was celebrated 4.5 hours away), and our brawl with the devil post-Christmas, my workouts seem a distant memory. I knew it would be hard with the holidays and our travels, but the unfortunate illness afterwards kept me down. It’s disappointing, since this was supposed to be the final week of Round 2, but I’ve simply decided to extend it another week—hopefully starting back up tomorrow. As the saying goes: it’s a marathon, not a race.

Other than that, there isn’t much to update on in the way of 21 Day Fix Round 2. I have yet to decide what I’d like to do after the next round is completed, but I would like to think it’ll involve a third round, as I get back into the swing of the new year, or maybe 21 Day Fix Extreme. We’ll see!

Day 11: 21 Day Fix—Round 2

I can’t believe I am 32 days into this program, now in my 11th day of the second round. I would say the second go of it is going well, though I do feel I could be a tad more diligent on the diet end of things. I am still keeping tabs on my portion control; however, I’m losing the balance of a solid eating schedule. That said, there are two things I want to touch on in this post.

It’s getting easier

One thing I’ve noticed over the past few days is how easy certain days are getting easier (not all days—I’m really horrible with cardio). There isn’t a single workout that doesn’t push me, but I am starting to feel like, by next week, I’ll need to up things to truly challenge myself. I don’t see this as a negative, especially considering where I started, but it’s been eye-opening. What I have started doing is pushing myself to take things one step further when I can, whether it’s an extra rep or holding something for just a few seconds longer than that damn timer says I have to (I really hate the timer). It always feels like a small victory to not only complete the exercise, but to go above and beyond, if only for a few seconds.

Reality check

I keep coming back to this, so I won’t do so in full detail, but I’ve had to remind myself of the reasons I started this. For what feels like the 100th time, they are: wedding, eventual parenthood, and because healthy weight ≠ healthy person. I’ve said all this—it’s not news if you’ve been reading—but, I have been going through a period where I’ve lost sight of the last reason because I want to see results.

At the completion of round 1, I did my “after” photos—which will eventually be my “during” photos at the completion of round 2. I could tell I was losing weight in person during round 1, but to see the differences in photos was really exciting and motivating. However, that left its mark on me. I want to continue to see results but it’s not currently obvious for me (I don’t weigh or measure myself during the 3 weeks)—I’m in a middle zone between where I started and where I want to end up. Is that a bad thing? No, not at all. But, if I’m being completely honest, all week, I felt like I wasn’t making any progress in terms of physique because I didn’t feel I could see it. Even worse, I was worried my round 2 after photos weren’t going to show any difference and that it would be seen as a failure…

This is so clearly a problem.

When I take on this attitude, I lose sight of my real goal: to be a healthier person for myself and for my future family. The fact that my exercises are starting to feel too easy, or that I’m able to hold every round of forearm plank from start to finish now, or that I feel excited and eager to exercise every day, stop being important when my mindset is focused on the perception of my health—the way my body looks.

So here is where I stand: I am proud of my before and after photos and measurements. At the beginning here, those are important because that’s where I would see the most progress. But at some point, the photos are going to stop, the weigh-ins are going to stop, and the blog posts will stop… but I’m not. I won’t have an “end goal,” I’ll just have my life, which is the entire point.

So while I will absolutely do another set of photos on day 42, I’m going to spend the rest of the second round focusing on strength, endurance, and empowerment…

Not a bunch of numbers.

Day 1: 21 Day Fix–Round 2

Good early afternoon!

I’ve officially begun my second round of 21 Day Fix with the dreaded Full Body Cardio workout and I actually finished it wondering how it was ever so hard for me to complete in the first place. Today’s workout was far from seamless, but thinking back to that first day, it’s truly astonishing to see how far I’ve come.

I had a few moments today where my mind turned a corner to, “yeah, take a quick break,” at which point I would stop the exercise mid-60 second interval. One or two were justified, but during all the others, I was able to—only moments later—tell myself, “Uh, you don’t need to be taking a break right now. Your heart rate is fine, your muscles, though sore and tired, are not burnt out, and the only reason you’ve paused is because you think you should be pausing. So get your sh*t together and get back in there!” I finished the workout feeling tired and sweaty, but not my most tired or sweatiest. I actually finished feeling like I could have done more (in a good, you-can-push-more way), which I will hopefully take with me in the days to come.


With my day’s update out of the way, there was another topic I’ve wanted to touch on since I started that I seemingly haven’t been able to get to: exercising with a neurological condition.

If you follow my blog (or know me personally), you know by now I have a condition called vestibular migraines. It’s a type of migraine disorder characterized by vertigo and motion sickness, with or without a headache. You’d likely imagine exercising affects this… and you’d be right. However, there are things I’ve learned along the way to help my workouts run smoothly (and steadily).

First, I need to seriously monitor my breathing. Even when my heart rate gets high, I can’t breathe at a rapid pace or else my head goes spinning. Sometimes we’re instructed to breathe in and out at the pace we’re moving, but that’s a place where I need to modify. I usually try to find a good and consistent rhythm, but it’s always slower. I prefer to take longer, deeper breaths anyway (thank you yoga).

Second, I monitor my eye and head movements. Oftentimes, we’re instructed to follow our hands, which has to be done with extreme care in my case. I followed a little too closely one time and I nearly kept turning with the movement. I also rarely look at the television screen anymore—too much movement with the people and the camera. I watch the demonstration, then turn my body so I can pick a stationary point or object to focus on (which is also good for avoiding the timer). This not only helps the vertigo, but it helps my nausea, which hasn’t been all that bad.

Lastly, I never bend over in fatigue after an exercise. This was something I used to do all the time—the typical hands-on-knees, gasping-for-air position—when exercising. Well, I did it once and the forward fall was enough to guarantee I don’t make that mistake again.

One of the reasons I avoided exercising for a while was because I didn’t know how my VM would be affected. I usually end up with some sort of headache after my workout due to the movement, but more often than not, it goes away quickly and I’m left with a good amount of energy for the rest of my afternoon. I’ve stumbled a number of times, but with proper monitoring, hydration, and focus, I’ve managed to stay on my feet for the most part.

I am very excited to be starting Round 2 of this program. Week after week, I am seeing and feeling the progress, both of which have me very eager to push forward. I have a unique set of challenges, but the modifications are worth the results.

Until next time.. ❤

Day 21: 21 Day Fix

Well that was quick…

That’s right! I have officially completed my first round of Beachbody’s program, 21 Day Fix. If you’ve been following along, you’ll know I’ve been trying to provide an honest depiction of my experience with this program so far. I would love to say I devoted myself to following every single step with all the ferocity I could muster, but we already know that’s not true. I chose to stay honest because I think most people can relate.

If you haven’t been following along, when I started my 21 days, I shared my reasons for making this change. It came down to three things: 1) I am getting married in 6 months and want to look and feel incredible, 2) I want to cultivate healthier habits that will take me into parenthood, and 3) I realized that being a healthy weight didn’t make me a healthy person—and I want to be a healthy person.

So, I began the 3 week journey that has brought me to this point. Unfortunately, I got derailed during week 2 after a successful stab at the workout that destroyed me just one week prior. I am happy to say I was incredibly diligent during the final week and felt great about it, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed in myself for faltering a few times. However, there was one aspect that stuck with me because—quite frankly—I needed it to. Despite choosing a program with “fix” right in the name, this change was not meant to be a quick fix. I made the decision to make a lifestyle change and—guess what—those don’t happen overnight. It’s not a race (or for a race) this time.

Which is also why I’ve decided to share my before and after stats and images with you today. A large part of me wanted to complete the second round with all the diligence of week 3 and then show the before and after results (because they’d likely be more impressive); but soon realized that was going against everything I had just said about it not being a quick fix and wanting to be honest. Just because I haven’t reached my peak performance or physique doesn’t mean I can’t celebrate my progress as I go through it. I’ve also decided to share my original before photos from back in March when I decided to begin eating better and walk every day; I think you can see a difference between those and the ones I took 21 days ago.

March Before Images:

21 Day Fix Round 1 Before and After:

BeforeAfter_Front_20

Holy scoliosis on this one! eek!

BeforeAfter_Right_20BeforeAfter_Left_20BeforeAfter_Back_20

Round 1 Stats:
Weight: 4.8lb. loss
Chest: .25″ loss
Arms: .25″ loss
Waist: 1.25″ loss
Hips: 1.5″ loss
Thighs: 0″ loss (which is a good thing in my book)

In conclusion:
I never cease to be amazed by the potential of the human body with just a little love and care. I feel myself bouncing back at a crazy pace and I am very proud of my progress so far. I have further to get, but this has been very enlightening and definitely motivating. So tonight, I am going to rest and officially start Round 2 tomorrow!

Day 17: 21 Day Fix

Good morning! I am starting my very sleepy day with a quick update. The good news is I’m back on track. I have stuck to my diet religiously and have completed all my workouts since Sunday, when I last posted. Believe it or not, the solution I proposed in my Day 14 update proved to be the route to go!

To give y’all some backstory: working from home allows me immense flexibility when it comes to my schedule. I have to be available to my coworkers, boss, and clients during traditional business hours, and I need to track 40 hours of work per week, but the rest is really up to me. So, what I decided to try was restructuring my work schedule to accommodate a mid-morning workout.

The routine

The day begins at 5:50 with a vibrating fitbit and a quick visit to the bathroom to brush my teeth. It’s literally a roll out of bed and into work situation, which I don’t mind. When we are in our new house, that is going to change, but for the next 6 months or so, rolling it is! Once coffee is in my hand, it’s to my desk to begin the work day.

What I’ve started to do is eat either “two breakfasts” or a breakfast and a snack between 7:30 and 10:30. This accounts for my first two meals out of 5–6. It gives me time to get something in my stomach, work done, and time to digest before I exercise around 11. By noon, I’m back at my desk with my post-workout shake, and that carries me through until at least 2–3, when I take lunch. Sometimes I’ll already be done with my 8 hours of work for the day, but most days, I’ll come back and work for another hour to finish up once I’ve eaten something.

I’ve only been doing this for two days so far, but I’ve had great success and it’s been really nice to break up the day that way. I always feel productive first thing in the morning, but that extra jolt mid-morning/early afternoon has been incredibly beneficial. Now, even before I started this version of my routine, each day was slightly different—you can’t always keep to the exact same schedule—so I know some days may prove more difficult than others, but for that, I simply take it one day at a time.

A little more honesty

A big part of me is still disappointed that I didn’t stick to the program during the middle to end of last week. I feel so proud and excited about the changes; so, I can only imagine what I’d feel like if I didn’t get lazy and skip those days or I didn’t over-indulge at some of my meals. I also started working with the proper weights and—wow!—what a difference. I did upper body with them yesterday and, my goodness, did that feel different! It was harder, but so much better.

I guess you can say I feel like I’ve cheated myself out of really amazing results. I can’t help but get the sense like I wasn’t truly doing this program until this week. While that isn’t the case, it sometimes feels that way.

WITH THAT SAID…

There is no use beating myself up over it beyond this point. I’m not the only one to ever give up and, while that isn’t a valid excuse, it’s human and I’ve already bounced back. I have no intention of stopping after the initial 21 Days are complete, and this isn’t about a quick fix for me. It’s a process that will take time and I clearly still have a ways to go. So I like to think it taught me a lesson and I feel more excited to be doing this program than ever before.

So, with that, I leave you to get my day moving. It’s my least favorite day of the week and I’m determined to make it a great one.

Until next time. ❤

21 Day Fix: Day 14

First, let me say I’ve contemplated a few different routes for an update. The first: dance around the truth, narrowly avoiding it; second: stop writing on the subject until I set things straight (aka hide); third: lie. I’ve decided to not take any of those routes; I’ve chosen to tell the truth in its entirety.

While I’ve loosely kept to my diet, I haven’t exercised since Tuesday… (ouch).

Guys, lifestyle changes aren’t easy. Things don’t just miraculously change overnight because you want them to. A lifestyle change is hard… but not impossible. I’ve chosen to admit my defeat to you all because I’m not the first, nor the last, to ever stray from their path. My goal is still very much in sight, which is why I’ve still been portioning my meals and finally bought the proper weights a couple of days ago; but the path itself has been a tad rocky.

I’m doing my best to bounce back and will still be doing my 21-day weigh-in and measurements before starting the next round one week from tomorrow, but I want to talk about the logistics of how I lost momentum. On Wednesday morning, I stepped on the scale for the first time and saw I had already lost weight. I looked in the mirror and could see noticeable differences. So, after a long and hectic day at work Wednesday, what was one day off from exercise?

That one day turned into two—”it really wasn’t a big deal.” But then it was three, followed by a fourth. Now I’m sitting here on Sunday after doing my week’s food prep, realizing it’s time to go all in.

I, like many people, have struggled with when to fit my workouts in. If I workout first thing in the morning, it makes me feel sick if my stomach is empty. But if I eat, then I need to digest… but by that time, I’m working. After work is a toss up. Sometimes I’m exhausted and unmotivated. Other times, I’ve worked late enough to run into dinner-time. The worst, though, is when I put it off until late at night. I’ve managed to do a number late hour workouts; but this week, I just let the minutes and hours pass me by.

Finding the perfect time to workout is proving to be the challenge I now need to face. I did one workout last weekend mid-morning (about 10:30am) and it felt perfect, so maybe that’s something I aim to do. But regardless of when it happens, I have to accept that is needs to happen. So with that, I now have an empty house and motivation to do my Sunday exercise. I’ve got one week left of my first round and I’m ready to give it all I’ve got.

And if I didn’t make this clear already: if you’ve stepped off your own path, know it’s never too late to get back on.

Day 9: 21 Day Fix

I. Feel. Incredible.

I am officially just over one week into 21 Day Fix and last night was the dreaded full body cardio workout. Last week, you may recall, this workout got the very best of me, considering it had been months since I did any sort of real exercise.

Afterwards, I felt ill for nearly two hours, eventually succumbing to the nausea. I could barely walk and felt terrible, both physically and mentally. During the workout itself, I found myself constantly “unable” to continue, with my head down and body hunched as I clung to my knees, desperately gasping for air.

Yesterday? It was night and day, compared to one week ago.

In all honesty, I went into the workout feeling pessimistic, almost certain I’d feel as if I was right back where I started. Then I found myself a few exercises deep feeling surprisingly ok. Was the workout perfect? Absolutely not. I did have to pause every now and then, but I was able to bounce back for everything. I made it through feeling tired, but refreshed and so incredibly proud (there may have been some jumping involved).

Studies have shown that great health benefits can actually come with a lot less effort than if you were trying to build strength and endurance. Granted, I am trying to build those things in time, but the point I’m trying to make is that I’ve been dieting and exercising for a week and already, the improvement is obvious. Yesterday, I found my heart rate staying lower for a longer period of time, my breathing less laborious for a longer period of time, and my exercises and movements were consistent and stronger. Heck, flexibility—while not up to my standards—is already coming back.

AND IT’S BEEN A WEEK!

To reiterate an important idea from my post last week; this isn’t just about getting the scale down to a magic number or fitting into a gown. Are those a part of it? Absolutely. But this is about learning to take proper and necessary care of myself. It’s about learning the importance of respecting and nurturing my body in the ways it needs to perform optimally—all so I can take that into parenthood.

And guess what, it really doesn’t take much… who knew?

Until next time. ❤

 

Day 6: 21 Day Fix

Good morning everyone! Hope all my readers, new and old, had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and Black Friday!

Earlier this week, I shared the news that I had started a new at-home workout program in my post, LifeSwitch. It is my first step in moving towards a healthier, more well-rounded lifestyle. Today, I’d like to tell you more about the program itself, as well as how the first 6 days have progressed.

Gotta Start Somewhere

When I was back in college, I completed a different at-home program called Insanity. I was, at the time, living at home for the summer, so I was not diligent in any sort of diet/nutrition plan; but, I still achieved incredible results by the end of the 60 days. Even compared to my years at dance, I looked the best I ever had at the program’s completion, having trimmed down, muscled up, and defined just about everything. I had an enormous amount of strength and a lot more endurance (which has always been a struggle for me).

Because of my success with Insanity, I decided to look back into the company that created it: Beachbody. I came to learn that they had started an online subscription that got you every. singe. program, exercise, and supplemental material they had. And let me tell you, it’s a lot. When I learned that I would end up paying monthly about what I do for Planet Fitness? You bet I made the switch (disclaimer: I am not a gym person).

21 Day Fix

So the program I’m starting with is called 21 Day Fix. The program includes 7 days of 30 minute video exercises, to be completed each week for three weeks. It begins with total body cardio, followed by upper body, lower body, pilates, cardio, dirty 30, and yoga. In the third week, the provided calendar offers a “doubles” option, that allows you to double up each day on workouts, a.k.a. Monday is total body cardio and pilates.

In addition to the workout programs, there is a nutrition plan which uses portion control without the need to count calories. The way it works is you calculate, based on their formula, your target calorie intake. Once you have that number, it corresponds to a specific plan, which tells you how many of each container you can have per day.

The hardest part of the diet is planning the day so you use only the allotted container allowances throughout all 5–6 meals. But I’ve gotten into the habit of sitting down first thing in the morning and planning out the day. However, the goal this weekend is to do each day’s meal plan before I go food shopping tomorrow, so everything is ready to go and I can do some prep work ahead of time.

How is it going?

The first day was the hardest. I couldn’t complete much and was so out of it when I was done, I got physically sick and stayed a lovely shade of sheet white for about an hour afterwards. Day 2 was hard, because I was so sore, but the pressure was taken off my legs (arm day) and the workout went pretty well. I do need to get heavier free weights to challenge myself more, but was proud of the workout regardless. Day 3 was leg day. At this point, I was stuck in the permanent walking position of just getting off a horse. I couldn’t straighten my legs and getting up and down was nearly impossible. Once I started the workout, though my range of movement was saddening, I was able to keep pushing through. Pilates day—day 4—was rejuvenating and very welcomed, though still quite challenging.

I’d love to sit here and tell you I haven’t faltered in my commitment; but, alas, I cannot. I told myself, going into this program, that I would follow the diet and routine as closely as possible, but wouldn’t worry about being overly strict on myself—it was my first stepping stone in the overall endeavor. On Thursday morning, I completed my pilates day after a healthy, portioned breakfast. Besides a granola bar to keep me from falling over mid-afternoon, the rest of my food was consumed at Thanksgiving dinner. In hindsight, I probably didn’t deviate terribly far, but I know my carb and fat intake was definitely too high. We also made homemade bread pudding, which definitely didn’t do me any favors (but holy crap, was it good).

Unfortunately, the deviation carried into yesterday as well, when I treated myself to more bread pudding and skipped my workout. Luckily for my future success with this endeavor, I felt terrible afterwards. So today, I am sticking with my meal plan from start to finish and am completing one workout (from yesterday) this morning and the other later today to get back on track.

Moving forward

Believe it or not, I’m already noticing a difference—it truly is amazing how the human body works and how taking care of it for a short time can drastically improve overall health. I am less bloated, waking up with more energy, and getting stronger. On the diet end, while it’s not always pleasant, I’m learning that a) my snacking was really out of control, b) my diet, while pretty healthy, is not well-balanced over all the food groups, and c) I really love fruit, carbs, and fats.

I still have two weeks left and plan on pushing myself to make the most of them. I’ve realized how much I need this and, at the end of the day, I’m not doing it for anyone but me. So each time I skip out on something, no one else is affected… I am.

So with that, I leave you and head to the living room for some cardio. Until next time. ❤

LifeSwitch

I. feel. awful.

Not bad, not okay, not meh… awful. Why? Because I did something wonderful for myself.

Ok, I’m done with the theatrics and will also note: that introduction was written last night. Yesterday, I began my new workout and diet. The diet part of it was fine (though I could really go for some Reese’s peanut butter cups), but the workout? Not so good. As a bride-to-be, with fittings four months away for a gown that shows everything, I’ve had my health and physique on the mind. Now, let me get something straight; I am not overweight nor am I claiming to be. I weigh the most I’ve ever weighed in my life, but I am still a “healthy” weight.

With that said, I want to look incredible on my wedding day, which I’m sure many people can relate to, and I happen to feel there is room for improvement. Now, I could do a crash diet and workout program a couple of months out and have it do the trick, but for me, that isn’t good enough and last night proved it. It’s no secret that Nick and I are excited to start a family once we are married; and I’ve always said that I’d love to be an active, fit, and healthy parent, both during and post-pregnancy. But I’m realistic with myself in admitting that I can’t just start being active and healthy the day I see that second stripe and expect the habits to stick.

Since graduating college and moving in with Nick, my eating habits are better than ever, though when we indulge, we indulge (RIP ice cream and cookies). I haven’t touched fast food in years, don’t have soda or juice in the house, and we eat well-balanced meals pretty much daily. I am—again—a healthy weight and, for all intents and purposes, I’ve considered myself a healthy person as well. Last night, as I completely failed the first day of exercises, I finally faced some of the truths I’ve been avoiding:

  • I eat healthy for most of my meals, but I also binge during lunch, eating something good, followed by lots of something bad
  • My sweet tooth takes over in the evenings and I overindulge
  • I’ve drifted from my yoga practices
  • I’m losing flexibility
  • I don’t get nearly enough exercise

And, most importantly, in my opinion: being considered a “healthy” weight doesn’t make me a healthy person.

I firmly believe that our bodies are our temple. We only get one and it needs daily care. I pay close attention to my mental health and I’ve developed really great habits in various areas; but last night, I did my first 30-minute workout and it destroyed me. I laid there afterwards, my heart rate racing, feeling absolutely terrible about myself. And as someone who spent most of her life being incredibly active, that was painful in more ways than one.

So what is the end goal here? Well first, I’m starting with a 21-day workout and diet to get back on track; I’ll share more about this in the posts to come. The goal there is to get my body used to being active again and maybe shed a few pounds. When that is complete, I’ll likely rev up the workouts with a different program to work on endurance, muscle tone, and overall fitness.

But those still aren’t the end goals for me. I want to use this time as a chance to reform my routine; to alter and better my habits so that when the programs are complete, I’ve learned ways to live a healthy lifestyle without having to follow a regimented diet and exercise program every day for the rest of my life.

I’m not looking for a quick fix, which is why I’m taking things pretty slowly. The wedding is 7 months away, so I have plenty of time; but again, this is about more than a gown. This is about finding ways to be healthy in my day-to-day life when there isn’t an end goal, a finish date, or a gown to fit into. This is about recognizing that now is the time in my life to create habits that will help me in the future, as a person who will only ever be getting older and a mom who wants to set a good example.

So I sit here incredibly sore, somewhat nervous, but nowhere near defeated. I am ready and pretty excited for Day 2 and to share the next 20 days!


Photo by Jacob Postuma