I lost my workout watch when I was in Houston about a week ago. It was a Polar F11 heart-rate monitor. (How DOES one work out without one of these heart-rate monitors?!)
I've lost a lot over the past few years, and I've gotten pretty tough. But I'll admit, losing that watch made me cry.
It had sentimental value because it was a precious gift my (now ex) husband really put some thought into getting for me. And although I'm the one who left him, I left because he didn't care enough, not because I didn't. So ties back to what we had still have meaning and are still painful. And now it was one more tie cut to all of that. Perhaps I should look at it as moving on, but for right now, I'm still sad.
RIGHT AFTER I OPENED THAT FIRST HEART RATE MONITOR
It also had some really strong sentimental value that wasn't related to him. It was THE first thing that got me working out on Dec. 25, 2007, the day that ended up marking the beginning of my 50 pound weight loss. It was THE number one piece of equipment that was most pivotal in me sticking with my weight loss, and it was vital for keeping track on this second go-round.
I've gone through several straps and sensors, but that watch hung in there. The buttons were pretty broken on it, the band was greyish-blue. I sent it to Polar one time to get a battery. I vaguely remember paying FedEx one or both directions, and I'm guessing I probably didn't work out while it was gone.
That watch was visible proof every week on where I was, and whether or not I'd accomplished my goals the week before. It gave me a trophy if I made it, it gave me what I called a "Turlet Swirlee" if I didn't. (As in "My workouts have gone down the turlet.")
I vaguely noticed that I couldn't find it as I was packing to leave Houston, but I made sure I hadn't left anything behind, and ended up deciding it must be among my things. I unpacked sooner than usual, because I was concerned about it. I looked for it while I was unpacking, and I just couldn't find it. I called my friend, who looked all over his house, where I stay when I'm there. Nowhere. He looked again when I got more frantic. Still nowhere. I looked everywhere for days around here, even looking in places where it had never been.
Then I remembered writing the first time around, after I'd broken my back and had foot surgery, about how important it was not to be a one trick pony. It's too easy to get railroaded if you have to have a specific spot in class, if you have to do only a certain workout, in a certain place, only at one time, with exactly the same circumstances.
Long term fitness is about showing up, regardless of what's going on. It's about just showing up and moving. We're going to get older, classes are going to change, equipment is going to wear out or get lost, a friend can't meet us, we might have an injury...the only thing we can count on is that things are going to change.
I've instigated and accepted a LOT of change in my life, and bit off so much over the past 2.75 years, that I nearly choked to death chewing on it. It certainly stopped me quite firmly in my tracks and then shoved me back to times and circumstances, physically, partner-wise, and financially, that I never thought I'd be revisiting.
But I'm still here, I'm still standing, and although it's taken awhile, I'm moving again. At first, I decided that with or without that workout watch, I was getting out there.
Then my housemate let me borrow his when we went for a walk on Saturday. And here's what I realized. Yes, it's important to show up with or without the watch. It's the burning of the calories that matters, not the counting of that burning. But it's also important to honor what's important and what works, especially at the beginning stages of this journey. So, before our walk, we went into the bicycle sports shop where I often park to at least see what they had.
And I found a GREAT deal! They had a Polar RCX3 WITH a GPS on sale for $199. Normally it's quite a bit more expensive than that. I thought about it while I was walking, and I bought it when I was done. I can't afford it right now, at all. But in the end, I realized I couldn't afford NOT to get it.
NEW HEART RATE MONITOR
It's white, which isn't my favorite. It has a thin band, which isn't my favorite either. BUT, it has a GPS, and it tracks different sports. It also swears it syncs easily to my computer, although I haven't tried that yet.
It doesn't have a trophy, which was a primary motivator for me every week, but it does have weekly summaries. What I've decided to do about this lack of a trophy, is get myself a little trinket of a trophy. When I make my weekly goal of burned off calories, I get to sit that trophy on my desk. When I don't, I have to put it away in a cabinet. Perhaps the physical act of doing this will keep me committed in the way the electronic version did on my old watch.
I know having it made me show up for working out last night. I didn't get a killer workout, but I walked, and I got some great pictures while I was out there. :)
It isn't my old watch, to be sure. But it's already becoming symbolic for me taking charge of my life again on my own terms. Getting this new watch is accepting that things don't last forever. It's time to move on from things that aren't really working well, to accept losses I don't have control over, and to be okay with changes I choose.
I'm proud that I came up with something to accommodate the motivation of that trophy. It shows adjustment to circumstances, which is something I wasn't doing such a great job of for awhile.
I also think that it can be a symbol for looking at this new weight loss journey as a brand new challenge instead of a re-do of an old one that worked out until my life fell apart. It's got some similarities, but it has a LOT more possibilities than before.
And more than anything, don't you think it was about time I upgraded to something new that will support me in ways that what I had before never would? I do.