The Journey Back to a Fitter Me: Finding Activities I Enjoy

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/1/2011 10:00 AM   :  21 comments   :  8,074 Views

Last week I started a new series about my Journey Back to a Fitter Me.  I’m trying to get back on track after having my third child, and I’m hoping that anyone who’s struggling to start and maintain a regular fitness routine will join me.  I was overwhelmed by the number of people who said they were ready to begin again right along with me.  Some said that lack of motivation had derailed their fitness efforts, while others had injuries or life circumstances that got in the way.  Regardless of the reasons, we’re all in this together.  I’m focusing on things one step at a time, and thought a weekly discussion of those steps as well as a recap of my progress will help me- and might help you too.
 
 
Week one recap:  My first step was to focus on developing a consistent routine.  I’m starting slow, aiming for 20-30 minutes of activity, 3-4 days per week.  If I can do more, great, but at this point, that’s the minimum that I’m working hard to achieve.   Last week was a little easier than most will be, since my husband was still off work for “baby leave”.  I had the flexibility to work out at different times of day since he was here to help, but I tried to pretend like he wasn’t.  I got up early (even though I didn’t have to) so that I could see what it might be like next week when I’m on my own.  It’s important for me to feel a sense of accomplishment because that will give me the confidence to feel like I can still make this time for myself on a regular basis.
 
 
A few of the workouts went well.  A few were a little rough when the baby needed to eat in the middle of my video, or my older kids wanted to workout with me.  Honestly, those interruptions annoy me more than they should, but it’s something I’m going to have to get used to.  Even though I got interrupted, I picked up where I left off and was able to stick with it.  So overall, I’ll consider Week 1 to be a success.
 
 
So where do I go from here?  Now that I’m getting into a routine, I’ve been thinking about what Step 2 should be.  Because my time is limited, I want to make the most of my workouts.  But more than focusing on burning as many calories as possible, my main goal is to challenge myself while finding activities that are fun for me.
 
 
Step 2:  Find some new workouts I enjoy.  I’ve always loved running, so starting with walking and progressing to running is an easy choice for me.  The only problem is that right now, I don’t have lots of time to go outside for a workout, and it’s also tricky to fit in a treadmill workout in the mornings.  So for now, I’m going to try walking/jogging a few days per week in the evening or on the weekends when my husband can watch the kids.  On my other workout days, I’m going to stick with videos.  My preference is videos that have a cardio and strength component to them, and at this point my options are limited.  So my goal for this week is to try some new videos, either by renting them at the library or borrowing them from friends.  I try not to buy a video unless I know it’s going to be a good fit for me and I’ll be able to use it long-term.
 
 
One of the keys to sticking with a regular exercise routine is finding things you like to do.  If I hated running and someone told me I had to do it every week, it wouldn’t be long before I’d give up.  Don’t be afraid to try new things, like a new class or machine at the gym.  Dust off your bike in the garage and take it out for a ride around the block, or venture over to the walking track while your kids are at soccer practice.  Find opportunities to try something new, and you might just find you start enjoying exercise more than you ever thought possible!
 
 
Next week I’ll share what new activities I tried, how the routine is coming along, and what’s next.  I hope you’ll have some good progress of your own to share too!
 
 
Have you found activities you enjoy?  Do you think that’s one of the keys to your fitness success?  How did Week 1 go for you?


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