Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Long overdue

I keep thinking, man it's been so long since I've blogged...I have so much to say!  But when I actually make a moment to write, my mind goes blank.  So I apologize in advance if this blog isn't very succinct.  

The last couple of months have been pretty taxing, not just for me and my family, but for everyone.  The subzero temperatures have made this winter nearly impossible to enjoy, plus the frigid temps have wrecked havoc on vehicles and homes.  It's hard to stay positive and set goals when it's all "doom and gloom" everywhere.  However, I feel during difficult times is when setting goals is most important.

At the beginning of February, we changed to a new gym that is closer to home which includes far less equipment and people.  The atmosphere was completely different than what I had become accustom to, which I actually unexpectedly have grown to like.  I thought I would miss the social aspect from the gym I had been previously attending.  However, quite the opposite has happened.  Without this becoming any sort of pity party, I would like to share a moment of realization that I had.  Reflecting with a friend the other day on how I missed the old gym faces, I realized that no one from our previous gym has messaged me, called or this point, it's been three weeks.  I have reached out with a comment or two on Facebook posts but with barely an awknowledgement in return.  This has forced me to take a deep look inward.

I am working out to impress noone, except myself.  

I am working out to compete with noone, but myself.  

I do not need acceptance from anyone, except from myself.  

I never realized how heavily I still relied on others for motivation, acceptance and approval, particularly during my gym time!  I'm saddened to no longer see those faces, but I also realize they had become a crutch for me.  I know that in passing there would be (and have been) a limited, but friendly exchange of hellos. That'll do. 

This last week in particular has been freeing.  I have been forced to challenge myself.  I also have two accountabili-buddies, my  best friend Jodi and my husband.  They  push me to do my personal best and hold me accountable to my exercise and eating.  They've always been there all along, but were overshadowed by my desire to fit in with the "gym crowd."  

A week and a half ago I set up a mini goal to lose 2 pounds in a week.  See, from November through mid-February I lost zero pounds, still gymed the same number of days in a week yet lost not a pound.  After changing gyms, I admittedly struggled the first couple weeks.  I went and I was able to focus on running, but still felt a little deflated.  Jodi and I had a couple of deep conversations about our goals and frustrations which has in turn, helped to intensify our workouts.  Also helps that the stressors that were holding me back have subsided.  We are in a groove, and feeling accomplished.  I met (well, exceeded) my goal for the first week.   This week I want to lose another 2 pounds and Sunday I'll weigh in.  I've really honed in my eating, strictly weighing and measuring everything and counting calories. This won't be how I eat forever, but it's what is best for me right now.  I still drink my shakes due to convenience, but I count those calories just the same.  

So back to the importance of goals! During the easy times, it's just that....easy.  But during the hard times, I know that I need to set smaller goals.  Setting goals gives me something to look forward to and push towards.  Something to, in a sense, give me tunnel vision and force me to focus.  

So although I never stopped, although I have kept on going, somehow I can still say I'm back!

Top left - I have some arm muscles!  
Top right - my sweaty buddy and I 
Bottom left - great workout!
Bottom right - I cut my own shirt...first attempt, need more
Practice :)

(Please note that I understand larger gyms with lots of equipment, people and support is not necessarily a bad thing and it's what some people need - it's what I needed for quite a while!)

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