Getting back to Exericise

July 1, 2008

There is one really good thing to have come out of the past 10 days downspin – I feel like I’ve come back to exercise. Having avoided most exercise for about a year, this is a major milestone.

A few weeks back I did an exercise of what I want my life to be like in the future (at a healthy weight) and I was surprised to see how much active lifestyle stuff was on that list. Things like going hiking, riding a bike, feeling up for impromtu exercise opportunities are all things I consider healthy people to do routinely. Add to that a discussion I had with a cardiologist who was very point-blank about the health benefits of exercise being totally separate from weight loss (not the calories-in, calories-out equation) and things were churning away in my head for a while on this topic.

It reminds me of when I started at the gym during my Big Loss — when I first met with the trainer she asked me how often I was planning to work out and my response of 20 min 2x a week was met with a firm response that it needed to be a LOT more to have much impact – 45 min cardio, 4 times a week is what she said. And she did scare me away for a while, I think it took 2 1/2 more months before I started to exercise, but when I did it, I did it, and the results were there. I needed a lot of time to think about it before I took action then, and I guess I did now too. A few weeks back I wrote about some of the reasons I’ve resisted exercise, and all of those remain true – but of course simple laziness is the number one reason!

But the bottom line is that for my health and my weight and my mental well being I am coming back to exercise. I’ve always felt better about myself when I’m exercising, and I’m giving it a big push for this summer.

What am I going to do? A lot of things, but what I’m not going to do is re-join the gym right now. I’m going to get a Velib card for renting bikes here in Paris. I’m going to check out bike paths that I can get to without getting killed on the city streets for my own bike (which is much comfier!). I’m going to keep going to the pool, keep going on walks. I’m going to dust off the elliptical machine and use that from time to time. I might whip out a DVD or two. I’m basically going to mix it up. This summer I hope to go hiking a lot – it won’t be too much, since I’m really out of shape, but just moving will be really good for me, body and soul.

I’ve decided to keep track via a minutes goal is in increments of 500 minutes, which I’ll also track to follow how long it takes me to achieve each set of 500 minutes. I’m pasting the ticker here, but it’s at 220 minutes right now.

500 Minutes of Exercise tracking :

  • 1st set : June 27th – ???

Since last Fall I also started tracking my walking by working on a virtual walk to Bilbao (in Spanish Basque Country). There is a small amount of cheating (or creativity, if you will) – I count every 15 minutes of walking as one mile (which is not always the case). For this I’m picking up the ticker from where I left off -all other tickers have been reset to zero, but I haven’t been totally sedentary these past few months – this sucker was stuck at 192 for quite a while – but 192 miles is nothing to laugh at either!

Look for more Walking to Bilbao pitstops in coming weeks.

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