Celebrating Every Step

We appreciate how Jeanne's second journal entry of her 8 Week Challenge fitness journey honestly describes the struggles as well as success. Leave a comment if you want to join her as part of a mutually-supportive, unofficial team! 

May 27, 2016

I was expecting this week to be hard, but manageable. Why is it, then, that I could meet only one of my goals?  Was I too optimistic? Too ambitious? And now my typical self-talk begins. 

  • Shaming: "You could do more if you weren’t so lazy”
  • Belittling: “How can you be tired? You haven’t done anything”
  • Doom and gloom:  “You’ll never be ready in time for the triathlon”

But if I’m truly honest, the only “blame” I can assign to myself is for going so long without any regular exercise. And when has blaming ever helped me? Never!!! It only serves to make me feel ashamed and much more likely to dig my rebellious heels into the ground of denial. Not a productive strategy. I accept the fact that I am not fit, that I am overweight. Despite that, I need to celebrate every positive step I take. No matter how small. And so, I will try. On to the week’s report:

Last Monday evening I went for a 45-minute walk along the lake as fast as I could.  Although 2.67 mph is hardly speed walking, since it was my first long walk in years, I’ll take a pat on the back for just getting out and doing it. 

Tuesday morning I joined the senior core strengthening class led by Marla.  It was a lot harder than I expected! But it was full of nice people (thank you, Patty, for the personal introduction to each station) and I enjoyed it.

I decided on Sunday that I would attend the Tuesday evening public lap swim.  Instead, I found myself in the kitchen a half hour before the swim, scrubbing the floor and rearranging cans in the cupboard – and just couldn’t go swimming until I finished. Guess what? I missed the swim. I mistakenly believed that having a couple of activities under my belt would make it easier to do subsequent ones. Not in the least true. Each time is a brand new start and just as hard as the first. Will it ever get easier? 

So the following day I resolutely went to the pool and swam exactly 10 laps, no more, no less.  The water was too warm and I didn’t enjoy it.  And I felt guilty quitting after 10 laps, which is much less than the 33 laps I’ll have to do in the half-mile triathlon swim. But I had pushed myself to get there and had promised myself only 10 laps. So I left.

My second evening walk along the lake was a little easier thanks, no doubt, to the margarita I enjoyed before heading out the door. (Not an effective solution, I realize, to drink my way to fitness). My last bit of exercising was on Friday when I attended another SilverSneakers® class and did 115 squats. That’s right: 115. And, after that, no exercise on Saturday or Sunday.

Summary of the week’s goals: 

Goal                            Outcome

3 walks                      2 walks

2 swims                      1 swim

2 classes                     2 classes

2 bike rides                0 bike rides

1 strength conditioning 0 strength conditioning

Despite the lack of results, I felt tired throughout the week. As I struggled to do the activities, I found myself wishing that I knew others doing this – people who are motivated to get this thing done even if (or especially if) they’re finding it hard going. So if anyone doing the fitness challenge happens to read this and is interested in getting together to form a mutually-supportive, unofficial team, please let me know!

Jeanne