My husband and I have been getting ourselves back into shape over the last year. It’s been an interesting journey. First of all, I am lucky and very thankful that HE is into being healthy. He has always been trim, and had a pretty decent diet and he wants to stay in good physical shape. That right there makes changes easier and it gives me someone to work with and who supports me.
We haven’t gone all gung-ho and changed every little thing. Our diets have cleaned up a little as we each pay attention to how food makes us feel. It’s more like slow wave that is rolling in. We each have different areas of concern, physical abilities, and (ahem) hormones to deal with so his daily routines looks very different from mine. But we support each other and that’s what counts.
My main goal is that I want to be fit. I don’t care about a size or a number. It’s a feeling. I want to feel strong, flexible, able to move well so that daily work is not a burden. I want great energy and endurance so I can go on long hikes, and work in the garden all day long. Physical changes are a bonus.
It’s been a long bumpy road. The last couple decades have not been pleasant – horrible pregnancies that left me with residual pain from a broken tailbone when I sneezed one time, a kid who had his big ol head wedged in an area that cut off the circulation to my left leg whenever I stood up, and Pubic symphysis diastasis pain due to the spreading or separation of the ligaments in the pelvic region. Things never did get back to normal.
Our firstborn never slept and cried alot, and took me through a whole decade of very little sleep and strung out cortisol levels from caring for him and his sisters. That really throws the body into a exhausted tizzy and that’s hard to come out of. I rocked all the symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue (I now know), but was prescribed some antidepressants which did more unpleasant things, such as oh…remove all ability to have feelings and destroy my metabolism further. Not good.
This all led to my autoimmune stuff which I’ve had since my teen years flaring up pretty badly. I finally started getting myself back on track with supplements and essential oils and more sleep once the kids got into school.
But I was in bad shape physically. I was tired. I sat around alot because my body hurt all the time and it was a bad cycle to be in. I was ready to change, but the magic physical-fitness fairy never did appear. Drat, is seemed I would have to do it the hard way. I’m going to be 40 soon and I do not want to feel like crap for the rest of my life. It was time to get to work.
Last summer I began walking. It made my feet hurt like hell. I hated it. But I did it anyway. Then I added in PiYO (Chalene Johnson) and I really really loved it! I was terrible at it, I felt about as graceful as a hippo on land, but I loved it. I couldn’t do a push up to save my life at that point. Every workout I huffed and puffed through made me hurt for awhile. But I started making progress. The moves became easier to do. I was building strength. My body did not change much on the outside for many months, but I was feeling better because I could MOVE better. My hubby started doing it too and it’s been very good for him physically.
Here’s the post I put on Facebook the other day to help encourage other women:
Encouragement for the day. Moving your body each day is so important! I have been getting myself in better shape after dealing with some decades-long health issues. My age certainly didn’t match up with how stinkin old I felt! Not gonna lie – it has been agonizingly slow and sometimes painful. I finally just decided I had to do it anyway, because some weeks I couldn’t do more than one or 2 workouts because I was so sore for many days afterward. But I’m almost a year in, and it’s so worth it! My flexibility, strength, and endurance is improving weekly. That stiffness I felt every single from NOT moving day is letting up (study the fascia – it’s very eye-opening!) I can work out longer, harder, and more frequently. It took alot of trial and error and determination to figure out what works best for me. I found workouts that I really love and help my body heal. Muscles are starting to show as the fat melts away.
I just want to encourage you to get started and don’t give up, even if you can only do a little bit of walking. It adds UP! God wants us to be fit and healthy to better serve. Ask Him what you should start doing daily. It is a fight worth taking on and you are worth it.
and then what I do now to keep moving forward:
Last fall I started doing PiYo and it was HARD! Then as it got a smidge easier I got Chalene Extreme, because I really love lifting weights. Those helped me get flexible and stronger and I did only those for a few months. About a month ago I started branching out and discovered HIIT workouts (short and intense) are what my body responds to best for fat loss without draining my energy. So I pull some stuff from fitnessblender.com and just got a subscription toRevelationwellness.org (Scripture infused workouts – SO awesome!) I mix it up alot now and try to get 4-5 good, sweaty workouts per week IF I am up to it. My sleep plays a large role in how much I can do.
Make your changes about gaining LIFE instead of losing weight, and it helps you keep perspective when things are moving slower than you want. There are no quick fixes. It’s NOT easy. I don’t like to be sweaty and breathless, but I NEED to be a few times a week. You can’t make progress until you push past your limits a little bit. Be consistent and the work pays off over time.
You can do it! I can do it! Just keep moving.