Let’s just get one thing clear: going to the gym sucks. Working out sucks. Right now it’s 41 degrees outside (in Florida – WHAT?!), so getting up this morning to go to the gym was just…hard. Kona woke me up at 3 AM to go poop. No vomiting, no diarrhea, no worms (all of which has happened since we adopted her in October. Fun times). Just…normal poop. At 3 AM. Really? You couldn’t wait THREE HOURS? Good thing you’re real cute, girl.
Anyways. I did NOT have motivation to go to the gym this morning. And yet…I went. And I feel very proud of myself that I did. Like I said, working out sucks. You know what doesn’t? ENDORPHINS. Elle Woods had it so right.
Here are my expert (because I’ve been doing this so long! All of two weeks!) tips to getting fit and healthy:
- Find what motivates YOU. For me, it’s walking. I get in the zone when I walk with Kona or on the treadmill. I’ve tried classes and exercise routines at home and videos. None of them worked for me. But I love to walk. I put on a book on tape or Netflix and zone out for 30 minutes or so. Presto – I’ve worked out! I sometimes add the elliptical or weights, but the treadmill is my go-to.
- Portion size and calorie counting. Get yourself an food tracker app or a fitness tracker with a calorie counter built into the app, like Fitbit. Pay attention to serving sizes on the labels and STICK TO THEM. Over the holidays, The Hubs and I both gained several lbs because we were eating out with family and friends so much. After we got home, we started eating normal portions again and I lost a whole belt loop. From just eating smaller portions. Magic!
- Start small. Go for a walk somewhere pretty. Do a few weights. Spend 10 minutes on the treadmill. You don’t have to go full speed out of the gate. You’re changing your lifestyle, not running a marathon. Unless you actually do want to run a marathon, which…good for you. I’ll be watching from the sidelines (do marathons have sidelines?).
- Find a buddy! It’s so much easier having The Hubs on this “health journey” (I really don’t know a less cringey way too phrase that, guys…). We can commiserate and whine and celebrate our achievements together.
- Track achievements other than weight loss. It can be very discouraging to go to the gym and do the work, and then not see the results on the scale. But guess what? Muscle weighs more than fat! And there are other milestones than a lower scale number! The Hubs and I have a calendar where we put a sticker (#teacher) on each day we work out. Our goal is to work out 4 times a week, and our calendar is looking pretty fancy, y’all. And remember, just because the scale says you’ve only lost 2 lbs in two weeks doesn’t mean nothing is happening. Two weeks in and I’m only 2 lbs down…but also 3 belt holes down. Progress!
- Don’t do diets. Diets suck. Depriving yourself of your favorite things just makes you feel crappy if you cheat. Eat what you want, just in smaller portions. Add more vegetables! There are so many ways to make the yucky veggies from your childhood taste amaze-balls. Roast them! Sauté them! Add more whole grains! Eat better fats! Do your research and find ways to eat your fave dishes in a healthier way. It’ll be easier to stick to it if you do.
Anyways, that’s my two cents. Do what you want, but remember Elle Woods. It might save your husband’s life…