Fitting in Exercise at Home
Does counting calories make you feel sad?
In a past life I had a really busy job. I travelled a lot, worked long hours and didn’t make the time to exercise at home (or at the gym!).
It was during this period that I was at my heaviest weight. All attempts to get in shape were half-hearted and usually focused on diet only – counting calories, restricting things, calculating points. And it always ended in the same way – without any significant results at all. Just the thought of fitting in a workout at the end of a long day or even on a weekend used to fill me with dread. I was just too tired to worry about that – or so I told myself – and I would regularly ask, “who can possibly work the hours I do and still get to the gym?”
A year after having my first baby, I went back to the same job and it was around this time I met Jenny. Together we worked out a manageable programme of activity – even 30 minutes can make a big difference.
Despite working long hours and having a toddler at home, I found I had more energy than ever before.
If ever there was proof that I had been making excuses earlier, then that was it! I’ve been thinking about that period of my life quite a lot recently.
I was in my late 20s / early 30s, hadn’t yet experienced what carrying a baby and giving birth does to your body (or how looking after small people seems to age you overnight) and I wasted a lot of time feeling unhappy with the way I looked. Even on days when I felt like I was looking my best, I’d see pictures afterwards that left me feeling miserable.
But what inspired me to write this blog post was something that happened last Friday night.
It was the school summer BBQ. Wine was flowing, everyone was having fun and one of the other mums was taking pictures that inevitably ended up on Facebook. One photo of me made me stop and look closely because it reminded me of one taken when I wasn’t happy with my weight. I think it was probably because I was wearing similar colours that it jogged my memory.
I can see a real difference in how I look in these two photos, yet on the scales I am no more than a few pounds lighter.
The main difference is that these days I exercise 4 or 5 times each week. Overall, I’m much happier with my shape than I was during the dieting days (if you ignore the pesky baby tummy that’s still clinging on for dear life) and I don’t need to follow a ridiculously restrictive diet.
Although the scales can be a good tool to use, especially if you have a big goal to reach, in my experience measurements (or using clothes as a guide) and how I feel are much more valuable indicators of what’s going on with my body.
Back in 2008 I could never have imagined that I would be the convert to exercise that I am today.
If I hadn’t met Jenny, I might well have still been counting the calories and feeling sad!
In a recent blog Jenny mentioned Einstein’s quote – the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. If you’ve done the diet thing more than once (and let’s face it, most of us have tried at least 5 diets) then why not try something different and look to exercise for the solution?
More soon Sarah