Just about seven months ago, I stopped running and working out intensely all together. I was finding that my body really needed a break from working out hard — I really had never taken a break for over five years, and it was taking quite a toll on my body. After a few months, my thoughts were confirmed — it was exactly what my body needed at the time.
I love that quote – “They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself”. How true is that? I spent years (yes, years) telling myself that I had to change my intense exercise ways to get the results I wanted, but never had the courage to do it. To be totally honest with you, it was a vanity issue. What would happen if I stopped? Would I gain weight? Would I be disgusted with myself? Would people perceive me differently? It didn’t occur to me until I stopped and actually did gain weight that my self worth isn’t and will never be based on what I look like in the mirror or how I fit into my clothes.
To be perfectly honest with you, it could have been the best thing that ever happened to my psyche. I didn’t feel like I had to fit into someone’s idea of what I “should” look like. It was hard though — really hard. At first I hated just walking. I wasn’t sweating. I didn’t feel like I was doing anything at all — but it was necessary for my body. It was especially hard as someone who puts myself out there as a blogger, reading about everyone else’s fitness escapades was tough. Knowing that I was eating way more than so many people out there was hard — but very essential and I’m so glad I experienced what I have in the last half of the year.
With that being said, I’ve spent the last few months letting my body get back into a normal rhythm and allowing it to trust me again. I have, however, been itching to get back into some sort of a normal exercise routine. I say that loosely too, I’m not looking to push my body super hard at the moment. I don’t want to shock it again. I’m going to take it slow and allow myself to get back into the fitness world. Right now I’m not looking to drop pounds or inches. If it happens and my body is still working in tip top shape, then so be it. I’m sure along the way I’ll end up being more toned than I am now, which is fine if it happens or if it doesn’t.
Working out for me has always been about relieving stress and allowing me my “me time” to think and wind down. Yes I’ve been walking/doing yoga these last few months, but it’s not the same. I need those endorphins. I love feeling accomplished after a sweaty workout. It’s part of who I am, and I miss it.
My “plan” right now is to work out 3-5 times a week, depending on my mood, my energy levels, and my schedule. The last thing I want to do is make myself feel stressed about getting a workout in. I want to do a combination of run/walking, lifting weights, and yoga. When I do each one of those is going to be flexible. If I feel like running, then I’ll run. If I want to lift weights, then that’s what I’ll do that day. My plan is to let this take stress away, not to create any more on my body. And if I find that it’s too much for my body right now, I’ll scale back immediately. And while I’m on this “new” journey, I’m going to try to remember this:
I am looking forward to starting my new plan that’s really not a plan at all. Right now, I’m just incredibly excited about getting back into exercising — well, except for the major soreness I’m feeling in my rear from an abundance of squats, lunges, and burpees two days ago. Ouch!