I have tried to write this article for weeks now, but I keep finding things to do. Then today I realized, that is exactly why I need to write this article. It's the entire reason the article even exists, because we get into the rut of being TOO busy.
In today's world, women regardless of situations, have so many multiple demands placed upon them through the design of modern society that we lose ourselves to our daily responsibilities. This insane schedule lends us the tools that cause our health ruts. I have yet to meet a woman who says, "I want to be fat"; "I want to be over-weight"; "I want to be so unhealthy that it's hard for me to walk up my child's school's steps"; "I want to start a gym/class then 2 weeks later quit."
Yet that has become the average woman. Now let me stop here and explain that I absolutely HATE the word fat. We are not fat. We HAVE fat each one of us just at a different percentage in our bodies, but never call yourself fat. Although this is something that I tend to do when I feel particularly low about myself, but it's also something I'm trying to change.
Regardless of how much I try to maintain a stable, healthy, routine at the gym it's just almost impossible; however, I've learned some tricks throughout the years to keep me going regularly at the very least. I aim for 5 days a week, but I'm happy with three.
1. Realize your own circumstance
I put this as the first step in getting out of an exercise rut, because so many times we women lie to ourselves about how "busy" we are. If we were honest with ourselves then we could make a plan and see exactly where we can fit in workouts into our week and build around that. Do you work a normal 40 hour schedule or second shift? Do you work 3 days a week versus 5? Do you work from home or are a stay at home mom. Sit down and look at a daily, weekly, and monthly calendar and build from there. You want to design your workouts around your schedule, otherwise you just won't do it. So some questions to ask yourself is how much time you have to work out, how many days a week, and what time of the day can you work out. Then plan for at least a month, because you want to set long-term goals.
2. Give up the scale
I don't even have a scale at home anymore. I became obsessed with the number which only tells me one thing; how much my body weighs in response to gravity. What the scale does NOT tell me is how much muscle I have versus fat and so on. Muscle and adipose tissue are not static, meaning you can always change the amount or content that is in your body. Stepping on the scale if there is not significant changes can lead to more serious depression and anxiety surrounding the gym and exercise so just don't do it, or do it in a healthy way, once a week, once a month, once every six months, but definitely not everyday. Try taking your measurements once every 3 months. You might fine a much happier relationship with your exercise habits. The point of exercise is not to be skinny, but to be the healthiest you that you can be. So throw out the scale or give it to a charity, because you my lady do not need it anymore!
3. Drown out the negative
One of my very best friends has been exercising for years and like all of us struggles to maintain a routine. She happened to be out with her children a couple of months ago and was talking to two ladies about her exercise habits and one of the ladies chimed in with, "that wouldn't even work off a hotdog and you think you exercise." This was very upsetting for her and even me, because why do we as a sex have to put down what another woman is doing? These naysayers and I guess what is commonly called "haters" are only acting in this manner, because they themselves are in a rut. Sometimes the negative can even come from a spouse, partner, child, mom, relative, or a great friend. Regardless of the source it is important to maintain a healthy positive attitude towards LONG-TERM goals and not a number. Eyes need to be fixed on the future!
4. Work through a plateau
I believe the hardest part of exercising is coming to a plateau or body set point as I like to term it. Our bodies sometimes are like, "I really like this weight, yep I really do and no matter what missy I'm not going to budge from this exact weight." So, you might be asking how do you move on from that body set point? You continue to work and you work through it. What's the saying? "When in Hell keep on walking?" Same thing here. Plateau Hell is real and it can be a real depressor. It's actually one of the main reasons people quit the gym after 6 months. They feel like well I've lost this much weight but no matter what I do I can't lose further, but the truth is we have to redefine our body set point and to do that we have to work through it. Eventually we will hit another body set point and have to redefine it yet again. You can do it though!
5. See your doctor
A motivating factor can actually be your very own personal physician. Don't forget that you need a yearly checkup! Go get your annual physical and check all of your hormones, blood pressure, and anything else the doctor's can think of. They will help you to see as you continue on through your exercise plan how your body has responded. Remember your body responds in so many ways to exercise and a healthy life-style that you probably can't even count them. You will see your "bad fats" decrease and your sugar levels stabilize EVEN if your weight hasn't dropped significantly, and this folks is what it is all about. Who knows in a years time you may even be able to get off some of your medications, but one thing is for sure it will definitely prolong your life and reduces the risk of cancer. Trust me I'm a biochemist! ;-)
6. Stop comparing
I feel I compare myself to other women in the gym, in the store, at work, and well just everywhere. I also think this is a very hard thing to stop, because I have body image issues. I feel I'm short and chubby and no matter what I do I'm always going to be short and chubby. It doesn't matter how other people see me, only myself, because I'm the only one that I personally can answer to, but it's so unhealthy. How about we stop comparing and be proud of ANY goal we make. What I started doing is setting fitness goals like "I bench pressed 70 lbs this week, but last week I only bench pressed 60" and this week I did 10 squats and last week died at 5. Whatever the goal is make it small attainable and keep increasing it as time passes, just don't compare your goals to another persons.
After it's all said and done there are some truths to exercising, it hurts, it's uncomfortable, you become stinky, something in your car always smells because of rotten sweaty socks or underwear, your butt leaves marks on gym benches from sweat, you have to use deodorant on your chub rub (inner thighs) so they don't peel each other off, your boobs bounce, but at the end of the day it's all worth it because you just made became a model for other women to follow. GOOD JOB BEING YOU!
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