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Feel the Burn!

November 4, 2010

I have a confession–I am an exercise fanatic.  My husband jokingly calls me the “workout Nazi.” 

I love the way working out makes me feel.  I love working hard until the point where I feel physically uncapable of doing any more.  It is what gets me results and the results help keep me motivated for more. 

Besides giving me an endorphin high, exercise has helped me get down to a healthy weight after years of being overweight, out of shape, and not touching a single vegetable or un-processed food.  It is a great stress-reliever, especially running.  My husband knows when I get that LOOK, like I am about to turn into the Hulk, and tells me to get outside and go for a run.  I usually waste no time changing clothes and when my feet are hitting the pavement, I am my own psychiatrist.  I have clarity and calmness of mind and I can often resolve any issues I’ve had that day, mentally, during my run.  I come home refreshed, de-stressed, and sweaty as hell.  And I love it.

I don’t discount any of the medical benefits of regular exercise.  Strength training can prevent bone loss and cardiovascular activity is so good for the heart.  I strongly believe that most diseases and conditions can be prevented by lifestyle choices such as diet and exercise.  Of course there are exceptions, but my personal rule is a prescription for lots of sweat sessions.  It’s sad to me to see so many seeking solutions that do not require them to make any changes to their current lifestyle.  These same people will take strange pills for weight-loss or only eat foods that are purple or drink nothing but so-called “cleansing” drinks for days but when faced with an alternative solution–eat more whole, clean foods, and get a moderate amount of exercise–they want to put a blindfold over their eyes and ears because it would just be too extreme.  Human behavior is so facsinating. 

Do you enjoy working out?  Do you consider yourself proactive about your health?

I live in a very small town–about 2000 people here.  We don’t have a Walmart, fast food restuarants, a hardware store, and we sure do not have a gym.  I do not live remotely close to one–I’d say the closest one is a good 30-45 minutes away, assuming there is no traffic.  I do not always have childcare available for my kids, so I’ve had to learn to become very flexible and to work with what is realistic for me.  Running outside and workout dvds have been my savior.  Last summer I invested in a double jogging stroller, and nothing else has been so instrumental in my fitness and freedom.  Pushing two little ones in a stroller takes a lot more effort than running solo, so I became quite strong and my endurance has soared.  It never mattered if the kids were awake or sleepy or what time of day it was, I could always put them in the stroller and go running.

Strength training has also brought about incredible changes in my body and overall fitness level.  I started strength training after reading the Abs Diet for Women, a book I highly recommend to anyone who wants to make some changes in their life and isn’t sure where to start.  It focuses around 12 “powerfoods” and the things you SHOULD eat, which I loved.  It didn’t say to cut out carbs or fat or fruit or to count calories.  It is realistic for “real life” eating.  There are some strength training exercises in the back of the book but a friend had recommended Jari Love dvds to me and I’m forever glad that she did 🙂  Jari uses high reps and compound exercises to maximize results.  I love that I can get a great workout with nothing but her dvds and some 10 lb dumbbells. 

Another life-saver for me has been p90x.  I do not work for Beachbody and I’m not trying to sell anything here, but p90x is a great workout.  I am getting abs–I AM GETTING ABS!!  I am getting definition where I’ve never seen it before–in my arms!  I can run faster and I can do more pushups than I ever thought possible.  I love that it comes with a plan with the order in which to do the dvds and I can never resist looking at the pictures of another p90x success story every time it appears on my Facebook newsfeed.

Do you have any favorite workout dvds? 

4 Comments leave one →
  1. thebettylife permalink
    November 4, 2010 12:58 am

    I love your posts, your attitude is great. I agree, hard work is the only way to get results when losing weight. No magic pills can do it for you. Keep it up 🙂 Betty x

    • November 4, 2010 7:19 am

      Thanks Betty! I’m addicted and I’ll never stop 🙂

      I wish the concept of hard work wasn’t so controversial.

  2. November 4, 2010 1:26 pm

    Great post! I totally agree about the way running makes you feel. My husband also never questions me when I say “I need to go for a run.” You are so right about being your own psychiatrist when you run. I can figure out why I’m agitated or cranky, think clearly about what I need to do to fix it, and I come back feeling great. I live right next to a gym which is great, but lately I haven’t always been able to go due to be at home with my baby (thanks for the tip about the jogging stroller!). I have started doing a couple yoga videos and absolutely LOVE them. They really help me relax – while still giving me strength and flexibility training.

    • November 5, 2010 3:27 pm

      Emily Elizabeth- I think the world would be a happier place if more of us were runners 🙂

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