WARNING: long post :)
In January 2009, I participated in a 5K training program with Fleet Feet sports. It was one of the best experiences of my life. My personal goal was to run the 5K at the end, but I ended up doing intervals (walk/run) which was fine – but I still want to completely run a 5K. Shortly after the program ended, I allowed stress in my life to consume me and completely lost focus. I wasn’t happy with myself – I wanted to eat healthier and exercise, but I was having difficulty pulling myself out of the funk.
During the spring and summer of 2010, I kept riding by a community gym advertising Zumba. I rode past day after day thinking there was no way I could get my groove on! In late summer, my neighbor & friend – Deb – asked me to try it out with her. Umm..ok.. I think – y’all I have NO RHYTHM, but I had so much fun! Within 10 minutes of starting the class, I was sweating and an hour flew by before I even realized time was up. It felt good and rewarding to be doing something for ME. I convinced another friend, Angie, to try it as well. It was like a girl’s night out each time I went. In the fall, the gym started basketball – so we wouldn’t be able to use the facility any more. I was disappointed because I had found something that met several criteria:
• It was fun.
• No one else had rhythm either.
• It did not require a monthly gym membership
I was determined not to allow excuses become “reasons” I didn’t exercise. To be successful, I knew I needed accountability, something I enjoyed, and something that did not require a big investment. In late October, I convinced Angie to meet me at 5:30am on Mondays & Wednesdays for a 2 mile walk. It felt good in so many ways!
In December, I asked her if she would be willing to do Monday-Wednesday-Friday. She was agreeable and we increased to three miles as well. We could have made tons of excuses during the winter – it’s too cold, it’s raining, there’s snow on the ground, tomorrow is Thanksgiving, it’s the day after Christmas - BUT WE DIDN’T. We kept at it regardless of the time, the weather, or the holidays.
Currently, we are on our first week of interval training (walk 2 min/run 1 min) and we will slowly increase the time & duration that we do. Exercise has become a big stress relief for me – it is the best form of therapy I can think of. I am extremely grateful that Angie has stuck with me through the cold, rain, and snow (& deer, barking dogs, skunks). If it wasn’t for her, I’m sure I would not have been successful because “snooze” would have been more appealing!
The whole point of this extremely long post is – do what you love and love what you do! JUST DO IT!