Something strange has been going on. I complained about starting trouble and you now know how procrastination tussles are a major part of my daily life. But this is one of those cases where I can’t believe I’m the same person. Where I often struggle to finish a piece of work, or get that long pending email sent, or finish that dratted interview, my efforts to get back into a serious and regular fitness regimen have remained frighteningly regular and undeterred by everything else that has come my way.
No, I don’t mean in terms of results, because I’m learning (the hard way) that the older you get, the longer and more effort it takes to really see change. So I won’t say I’ve reached the goal I wanted to, but the effort I’ve put into it staying regular, the tenacity in giving every workout my all, and sometimes completely taking myself by surprise when I manage to squeeze in a double workout on somedays has come as a pleasant shock.
First, the energy levels. A combination of paying a little more attention to what I’m eating, and staying off alcohol and dessert for the most part has its very obvious benefits. I am less lethargic, manage to make even the littlest dregs of energy count for a lot and feel a lot more motivated to push myself. I have had fewer urges to skip gym, and even the two times the thought occurred, I dismissed it pretty easily. I had intended to go an entire month without skipping class, and I’m happy to say I came close to achieving it, missing only one day, that too because my folks were visiting and I didn’t want to be sitting at the gym while they had fun!
Second, its the season to sweat it out. The temperatures are slowly rising and the change is really apparent, but the real discomfort is the humidity levels that re through the roof. It really sucks to be sweating it out for no reason at all. Sometimes I’m even sweating just sitting in one place. So while I complain about it for 90% of the day, it’s during the couple of hours of working out that I really feel like the humidity is a boon. First, you don’t feel as dehydrated because you’re practically surrounded in a pool of moisture. I know it doesn’t work the same way for everybody but working out in this weather makes me feel really energised. I end up drinking a lot more fluids to compensate, and it helps me work harder, and feel more energetic overall.
Third, I think the time/frequency-based goal worked well for me. Instead of making an ideal fat% or waist size my goal, I decided to just start by ensuring I go in to the gym everyday, as many days as I could. Much easier to manage, much easier to achieve.
Fourth, I was trying to find a good combination of activities that would suit my fancy when I realised I should just go with the flow and not try and mix things up too much. I’m currently really enjoying my kickboxing class, so I signed up for the class 5 days a week and it has been the right balance of challenging and rewarding. I bought myself a cycle early in March and have been also cycling with the hugsband every chance I get (Yes I need to write about this!) and it has been UH.MAYY.ZING!
So I don’t know which of these changes has brought on the extra energy and added determination or motivation because God knows it’s been flagging in the other parts of my life. Perhaps its a combination of all, but it’s been such a good few weeks, I sometimes wish I could design my life around just training for something. Coincidentally, I wrote about getting back on the fitness bandwagon, specifically overcoming starting trouble or breaking the laziness rut over at ZenParent. I don’t know why I didn’t write that post in first person because it is entirely a personal story, about the way I was feeling at the start of the year, and what I did then (and in the past) to overcome it.
If you’re feeling lethargic and like your energy is flagging, just start. Make a beginning, a small one. And start by trying to get from one day to the next. Make it a habit, and soon enough you’ll find yourself at the end of the month feeling so much better than where you began.