Archive for the i am not a gym rat Category

resolution.

Posted in c, etcetera, faith is action, i am not a gym rat, Life, me, mirror mirror on the wall, the glass is half FULL, the joys of living in Florida on September 9, 2009 by drbolte

i mentioned in passing a few posts ago that i hadn’t worked out since before the wedding. by this i mean that i haven’t been to the gym, put on a jillian michaels sadistic dvd, or otherwise done a formal exercise activity. this, however, doesn’t mean i haven’t spent time doing things that require exertion, like moving things around and walking around theme parks and digging in my small but disgustingly in need of tlc garden plot and walking across campus and you get the idea.

my problem is really time. i just didn’t have the time, or so it seemed, to truck to the gym (which is now much farther away than it once was, across gville downtown/campus traffic), work out for an hour, come home, shower, and move on with my day. i just don’t have those kinds of windows.

so i think i thought that i was just going to have to stop working out, though in the back of my mind, some part of me was screaming both in warning and in horror.

it sounded, faint though clear, a little something like this: WE HAVE NOT WORKED THIS HARD FOR YOU TO GIVE UP RIGHT NOW! THERE’S ALWAYS TIME FOR WORKING OUT! MAKE IT WORK, WOMAN! MAKE IT WORK!

you see how that might be a bit difficult to ignore, even in its faintness.

as the weeks progressed and the stress continued to build and the realities of life hit me, as they hit everyone, i realized that i wasn’t sleeping well, i wasn’t eating well, and i wasn’t feeling as regularly sassy as i normally do.

the sassy was sort of…sporadic.

i knew, in my heart of hearts, that it was because i wasn’t moving.

moving is an incredible stress reliever. it’s amazing to me what 20 minutes of giving my all to  something does not only for my sleep patterns and the way my body works but for my feeling about myself. somehow, when i see that i can in fact run for blocks at a time or i can stay at the jillian michaels workout o’ pain for the full 20 minutes, i feel like i can conquer anything.

(that’s nice to remember when i wonder, every day, if i can manage the daily mountain that faces me. which is probably a grain of sand, to quote carrie underwood, but nevertheless seems like everest sometimes.)

today, despite the fact that i really have oodles to grade and heaps to do, i decided that it was a beautiful sunny day. it’s hot but not death hot. it’s the kind of hot you want to go hang out in.  it’s an inviting kind of sunshiny florida day that makes you want to strap on an ipod and some slightly worn out sneakers and take on your neighborhood for a good game of “how long can i run before i die?”

that’s what i did today.

i tried out a pretty short loop in my neighborhood, one with well-traveled roads and as little ghetto as possible.  it was fantastic. i mapped it. it was 1.5 miles–decent, i suppose. it took me about 20 minutes, which isn’t great but isn’t horrible either.  i gave myself permission to walk as fast as i wanted and run as slow as i needed.

i came away knowing the following:

  • no matter what happens, i have to exercise. if it means that i need to wake up earlier, i need to do it.  i need to do it for me. i need to do it for my job. i need to do it for my family. a better me is a better wife, a better teacher, a better scholar, a better friend.
  • i need to remember that taking care of me is not selfish. it’s essential.
  • i need a longer route. because i’m better than i thought i was at this whole running/walking combo.
  • i liked it. a lot.
  • running slow is not a bad thing. in fact, i am beginning to think that it’s the only way i’ll be able to build up my endurance.
  • my neighborhood is actually fairly conducive to running.  i wasn’t the least bit nervous, scared, or inclined to trip.
  • i need a new ipod holder. the bra isn’t really working well.

this was a very productive day, and i’m proud of myself. even if it’s only 20 minutes a few days a week (but let’s get real: exercise is like a drug. i’ll want more soon enough.), i will find time to take care of me.

it’s going to pay off.  i know it.  here’s hoping i can stick with it.

everything i need to know i learned from jillian michaels.

Posted in etcetera, i am not a gym rat, life lesson number 498, me, mirror mirror on the wall, the glass is half FULL on May 29, 2009 by drbolte

not really, but i am learning lessons.

1. nothing is impossible.

i did plank jacks today. do you know what those are?  imagine yourself in pushup position.  then imagine doing jumping jacks with your legs.  while in pushup position.

it sounds like death on a stick, right? like it would be impossible?

not true. it was easier than i thought it would be.  i thought that it would be too hard every other time that i did level 2.  i never tried it.  i never knew if i could do it. when i tried it today, i expected it to be like plank thrusts (which is jumping in your knees while in plank), which were very difficult.

but they weren’t.  they were easy.  FUN.

therein lies the lesson.  what seems crazy and impossible can often be fun. and easy.

if only you try.

2. progress comes in flashes and you have to pay attention.

with 30 day shred, you’re supposed to do this deal every day, progressing (i guess) every 10 days.  so the effort is kind of constant.  in that way, you see your progress.  but sometimes, you don’t.

because if you’ve been shredding for longer than that, and you’ve been at level 3 for a while, you might realize that things are a bit easier or see that your heartrate doesn’t go into “imminent explosion” mode as often, but you’re still pretty much doing the same thing as you’ve been doing for a while now.

but when you’re trying to escalate your efforts, taking every opportunity to do more, to reach a new fitness goal and to finally, once and for all, shatter a plateau, you start noticing.  that, even though jillian tells you that it’s okay that you don’t kick to your head in high kicks, you’re darn close.  that you’re far more flexible than you used to be. that situps are just as easy as crunches and that, actually, you prefer them.

sometimes, you have to stop, turn around, and look at things from a different perspective.  that’s when you see the progress.

3. results come in lots of ways.

for example, the above information.

and NOT the fact that the scale keeps creeping up.

(i know i know muscle repair retaining water muscle weighs more than fat blah blah blah)

30 day shred will DEFINITELY teach you to pay attention to all of the results, not just the shiny ones that you thought that you wanted.

hey wait. didn’t we pass that tree about a mile back?

Posted in bff, blogging, bridal diaries, c, i am not a gym rat, i promise you that you won't care, me, mirror mirror on the wall, the engaged life, the glass is half FULL on April 24, 2009 by drbolte

if you’ve been around for a while (and so many of you have! thank you! you’re wonderful!), you know that it was about this time last year when the blog went all fitness-y.

meaning, it’s about this time when i joined MyFoodDiary (the best thing ever, btw, if you’re looking for a way to keep track of your calories…) and started exercising like i meant it.  and as a result, i started posting ALL! SORTS! OF! EPIPHANIES! about endorphins and muscles i never knew existed and all sorts of things that really probably was of no interest to anyone else but me.

why do i bring this up now?

because…i feel it coming on again.

because the only thing i’ve felt inclined to post over the past few days were updates on what my body has been doing, since mainly my mind has been occupied with two things: getting off my butt and taking care of the sick bff.

today’s update? before my new nikes reared their ugly “you haven’t broken me in so you REALLY should have double socked” heads, i ran the winding ramp at the stadium, sprinted up a shorter straight ramp, ran a lap around the stadium, did one endzone stairs running, and did a bit of walking as well. i’d never really experienced that lung burning thing that everyone talks about.  i know what it feels like now.

see? kind of the same deal as last spring, except OHMYGOSHI’MRUNNING.  if it weren’t for my lungs burning, i could have kept going.  my legs didn’t hurt. neither did my knees.  i felt like i had a good solid pace.  and did i mention that i did all of this without my ipod, which i forgot at home?  yeah. i think i win.

so that’s your update.  kind of boring, i know.  seems like my mind is on one-track.

although, i will say that, since everyone asks me how wedding plans are coming every time they see me, that i am completely and eerily aware of the fact that i am currently existing in the calm before a MASSIVE storm. know what’s going on this summer?  well, i have about four or five days to get my chapter revisions (part one) done. then i have about a month to get my last chapter drafted before the chaos descends. in may, during the time when i will be writing said last chapter (not counting the introduction and the conclusion), i will be working two days a week at the RWC and doing a fairly intensive training class for my new (hopefully) job as an online instructor.  may is also invitation month.  we have to get those out pretty soon, and since we’re doing them ourselves, we need to get that going pretty soon.  and then there’s registering and picking up my dress and figuring out the whole alterations thing and you see where i’m going with this.

so maybe having a simplistic one-track mind right now is a blessing.  maybe then i can actually get things done before the world in general explodes.

but maybe the exploding world will result in much more interesting stories.  until then…just hang with me.

ps. i also just saw that bride wars comes out on dvd on tuesday. despite my rather sharply constrained budget, i may buy that movie and watch it every week to remind myself that the thing that is important is LOVE. not cakes. or highlights. or tans. or anything else.

update on cxxvii: magic shoes.

Posted in c, etcetera, faith is action, fall is football, gators, i am not a gym rat, me, mirror mirror on the wall, the glass is half FULL on April 23, 2009 by drbolte

i went to rack room and bought some nikes.

they are pure magic.

know how i know?

9 minute 20 second miles on the crossramp.  doing intervals.

but whaaa?!?

also, while i was at said gym, i watched ESPN a little. and when i was watching ESPN? i saw a story about how percy harvin may have tested positive for pot at the february nfl draft dealio.

yeah, good job there percy.

(idiot. if it’s true. but even if it’s not, they spent a copious amount of time talking about how he lives in a little something called percy land, where he thinks everything is about him. that’s gotta suck. plus…i think it’s true.)

so i crossramped for 6.5 miles and 63 minutes and i think i’ll go to the stadium tonight.

go me.

it’s amazing how much happier i feel and how much more at home in my own skin i feel when i’m full of endorphins. it was an extraordinary difference yesterday afternoon.  why don’t i remember that more often?

i hope stadiums go as well.  i like working hard for something.  i hope i remember that as well.

cxxviii: yo-yo freakshow.

Posted in c, etcetera, faith is action, i am not a gym rat, me, mirror mirror on the wall on April 22, 2009 by drbolte

so i’ve been slacking seriously on the weight loss front.

stop. that’s not true. that’s part of the problem, that attitude right there.

i have been incredibly hard on myself about what i’ve been doing and not doing. what have i not been doing? exercising as often as i was pre-november. gosh, i wonder why. what have i been doing? eating pretty much whatever i want whenever i want but doing it in such a way as to maintain the weight loss that i have worked so hard for.

that’s actually quite extraordinary, considering i’ve been cooking more, making way more desserts, and eating foods that i don’t normally eat.  or didn’t normally eat.

ANYWAYS.

but what i’ve been incredibly frustrated with is that i’ve been losing and gaining the same three pounds. i never really get above that one marker that i consider my end-all be-all point of no return. well, that’s a lie. i did once. but i kicked it into high gear and brought it back down. but for the past two months or so, it’s been a see-saw.  that ever-present number, then down three pounds to the happy progress! oh my gosh! i’ve broken my plateau! number.

and then back to the ever-present number.

my body is clearly very happy at this number. i, however, am not.

that’s not to say that i am not happy with my body and where it is. it’s much smaller than it’s ever been, and i’m happy with that. but that number…it has to go down.  i have a goal, yes, and it’s a realistic goal.  but i have to crack this final threshold number. i’m being necessarily vague, but it’s a big one. and when i crack it, i never ever ever want to go above it again unless there’s a fetus inside of me. and even then, i better be in my third trimester.

(oh wow. i’m talking about babies. and it’s an actual possibility soon. WEIRD.)

but that number.  oh how i hate it. i don’t remember when the last time was that i was below it.  i’m not sure i have been below it anytime since about the 6th or 7th grade.  i know i was definitely above it in the 8th grade, so…there you go.

but what i realized today, and this may come as no shock whatsoever to you but it was a bit of a revelation to me, is that i can’t have it both ways. i can maintain while eating the way i am. that’s essentially the life that i am living.  i am living the maintenance lifestyle. if that’s what i want, if that’s where i’m happy, then that’s what i can do.

but that’s not what i want.

i feel like, in a lot of areas in my life, i am coming out of a bit of a rest period. i’m back to working on my dissertation, but with an urgency of finishing that i haven’t yet felt. i just want to be done. i think i’m getting to the point where, because i can begin to see glimmers of light at the end of the tunnel, i am willing to work as hard as necessary, sleep as little as possible, give up man vs. food and deadliest catch (yes, those are my favorite tv shows shut up) in order to think about dorothy wordsworth and mary wollstonecraft and helen maria williams.

i realized today that if what i REALLY want is to lose this weight, i have to act like it. i have to put myself first sometimes, sacrifice some things now (like an hour’s worth of cuddle time or two hours of gilmore girls and bones and laying on my bed) in order to get what i want.  once i get there, it’s not like it will go away. but it will be maintenance. and that’s different.

i am apparently very good at maintenance, which makes me really happy.

but in the meantime, it’s time to kick it into higher gear. to work hard for what i want instead of expecting that everything will just come my way.

so my goal today? go buy new shoes so that the impact of the stuff that i am doing (stadium stairs, running, high impact workouts) stops hurting my joints.  then? go to the gym. do some crossramp intervals.  remind myself that a) i CAN do this and b) i LOVE doing this.  it makes my world sort itself back together.

instead of feeling like a lump of blech, i feel like i can conquer the world.

i need to conquer the world.

it all may seem very simplistic, but sometimes the very simple things are the things that are hardest to understand.  working is good. some days i want everything to come to me without any real effort on my part.  that doesn’t make much sense, does it? how can i feel the true joy and accomplishment of something if i haven’t worked hard at it?

so…time to go to work again.  i’m kind of excited. that’s weird.  but good.  but weird.

i like that.

inspired by my 9pm gym trip.

Posted in i am not a gym rat, mirror mirror on the wall on April 1, 2009 by drbolte

if you have been on the stairmill for as long as i’ve been on the crossramp, and your ponytail is perfect and you just have the slightest glistening sheen of sweat on your upper lip, i don’t like you. i don’t trust you.  i don’t believe you’re actually doing anything. if i didn’t KNOW that you’d just been on the stairmill, which will kill you 500 ways and then spit you back out again and laugh at you all the while, i wouldn’t believe you’d actually worked out.

you should sweat. you should be good and sweaty. you should feel, as you walk out the gym door into the muggy florida night, that people are staring at you and wondering why you are in the condition that you are. you should weigh two pounds less because of said sweat.

you should look like you did something.

yeah, i don’t trust you, ponytail girl.  i have got the Christian charity for you, and i’d probably be perfectly nice to you if we were friends, but i might still think there was something squirrely going on with your workouts.

i’m just sayin’.

in other news, and fair warning here, if i don’t stop seeing the number that i keep seeing on the scale, i am going to go a little insane.  it’s like a bad penny, that number. keeps turning up and annoying the ever-loving crap out of me.  if it were an animate object, i’d probably punch it. but it’s not. it’s me.

and i’m plateaued.

dangit.

conquering this day.

Posted in bridal diaries, dissertation, domestic goddess, etcetera, i am not a gym rat, i love my life, me, mirror mirror on the wall, perfect brightness of hope, the engaged life, the glass is half FULL on March 30, 2009 by drbolte

i woke up with hopes of getting a lot done today. i quickly felt daunted by how to do it all and fit it all in.  they’re all such disparate tasks–everything from stadium stairs/ramps and a mega cardio workout to harassing my apartment building into finally submitting the stuff for the new apartment to lighting a fire under my butt and starting the dissertation again to talking to my mom about the wedding and life and everything since i haven’t talked to her in a week–and it felt impossible to really do them all.

that’s a pretty common theme in my life. i do okay if in one day i am asked to do three things that are all common–laundry, clean the house, cook dinner–but if you ask me to use different skill sets, i start to wonder if it’s possible.

i’m not sure if that’s pretty universal. is it?  i’m not sure if i’ll ever get better at it.  will i?

but what i know is that when i start thinking that way, everything gets colored by the stress crayon and i start to see things in a completely skewed way. i don’t love it.

so here i am again, focusing on the positive.  and updating you.  see? i’m multitasking already.

1. found a dress this weekend.  it was the cheapest one that i tried on. it fit PERFECTLY. it was simple, elegant, and beautiful, it had everything that i wanted but never knew i imagined that i did want.  i can picture getting married in it.  and i cried a little. oh. and it’s on sale.  🙂 did i mention that i looked small?

2. found a reception site. it’s perfect. it has a really good homey feel to it–not too spread out and big, not too small.  it has hooks in the walls already so that we can hang lights and do all kinds of things.  we figured out how we want to set it up and it was an amazing feeling, planning the day with the  man that i love.

3. i went to the stadium this morning, even though i thought that i would skip it. success number one.  i burned 757 calories. success number two. i ran some, in several interval spurts, and i felt lighter on my feet than i really ever have.  no trudging, really.  success number three.

4. i’m about to go make this new apartment thing happen, since i’m tired of waiting on the incompetence of the world.

5. i’m not letting the fact that i am seriously and 100% plateaued with the weight loss freak me out too much.  all i can do is all i can do, right? i just REALLY want to be mega hott for my wedding.  all i can do is all i can do.