Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Doing Hard Things


I hate exercise. With a passion. I put so much energy toward hating exercise, that I sometimes feel as though I don't even need to exercise. How have we come to a place that we have so much ease in our lives that we even NEED to make time in our day for exercise.
Thinking back to my late teens and early 20's, I wasn't a lightweight. Really, I was 5'9" and weighed in at 175 lbs. I rode a bicycle most places, walked to an from a lot, swam, and lifted weights with a friend at the local YMCA. My jobs were physically challenging. People would actually comment on my muscular thighs.
Then, I moved. I now live in a place that is cold and wet for most of the year, and small towns here aren't the same as they one I lived in before. I can not do all of my business in this little town. There is no way I would be able to walk to the grocery store and haul groceries home on a bike here. I live a few miles up a rural road from the closest grocery option.
When I first moved, I didn't miss walking and biking every place. I would still walk on my own time, but after a bit, I found that I was commuting to work, sitting at work, commuting home, sitting a a child's soccer practices, and sitting in front of the tv. The most physcial activity I had was participating in a bowling league. There's a lot of sitting there, too.
Then I began having babies.
When I was younger, I could eat whatever I wanted whenever I wanted too, because I burned it off. I didn't realize that was what was happening though, until I started packing on the pounds.  I gained 90 lbs with my first baby. Yes, really. Then I lost 60. That still left me with 30 extra lbs. Let me tell you, being tall allows a person to hide extra weight in clothes. Since my problem areas are my belly and upper thighs, I could hide those pretty well with jeans and sweaters. Perfect for the weather where I live!
More pregnancies helped me pack on more weight. Pretty soon, my legs and rear began to thicken, then my neck and chin. Oh my. Noticing that actually brought me to tears.
I have tried some weight loss programs before. Some pretty expensive ones. They were promising, a couple of them were really great programs, but out of my budget.
I joined gyms, but I would go for a month or two only to find out I was newly pregnant once again. *sigh* So I'd quit, promising myself I'd join again.
Then I found a woman that has 12 kiddos, homeschools, and looks great. She has an organized but casual lifestyle, and her family hasn't been wealthy. Like us here at TheZoo.  She also went from a size 22w to a size 6. I've seen her photos. So, I check out her system.
I've been using it for week. My teen daughter has been participating with me. This is great, because I need accountability. I have also been posting my progress on facebook, again because I need the accountability.
So, in a week I have lost 6 inches of body fat. I am gaining muscle. I know this to be true because, guess what? My arms get tired just from folding laundry. This isn't a joke about how much laundry we have. It's true. My arm strength has always been awful. I could press 300 lbs with my legs no problem, but it was torture to get anything more than 20 lbs on the weight machines with my arms. I am not kidding. 
My daughter has lost 8 1/2 inches. She is so excited!
We have come up with "The Can Plan". We put our spare change and dollar bills when we are able to in a coffee can so that, in six months, if we have lost any dress sized (I think we will!) We can go on a shopping spree. Maybe buy a piece of clothing that we wouldn't have worn at our previous body size. She doesn't have far to go, but I do. I'm guessing it will take 18 mos to 2 years to get back to where I was at age 20. That's okay.
My goal is two dress sized in six months. The whole mess of mass is too lofty a goal to not be broken down into pieces.
I'm looking forward to sharing a success story!


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