My sister-in-law Linda once told me that she has never known a person whose weight yo-yos as much as mine does. And she was so right! I used to focus just on losing weight. Didn’t matter if I was actually healthy, just that I was no longer fat… until the next time I got tired of not eating and partying like everyone else I hung out with and gained weight again. And then after a while I’d feel uncomfortable enough to lose weight once again. Weight Watchers was a part of my life many times. But apparently I just wanted to figure out how to continue to eat junk food while staying within my allotted points because I had notes telling me the point values for Funny Bones and various other junk food.
My friend Cathy and I joined a gym on Long Island. We used to laugh our way through aerobics class and then stop at McDonald’s on our way home!
Last time we lived in Coventry I joined a gym with Laura, who used to have to move to the other side of the room to avoid spending the entire step aerobics class laughing as her mother tried to follow along. Oh well, I laughed myself silly during that class – and laughing burns calories too, right?
I also found Leslie Sansone’s “Walk Away The Pounds” videos back then. Sometimes Dave, Laura, and I would manage to find enough room for all of us to try to follow along – I remember lots of laughter with that also. But at least we doing something as a family, right?
But exercise was never really a part of my life. We were outside a lot, rode our bicycles or walked everywhere, but I never “exercised.” I think growing up feeling that I was totally uncoordinated and not good at sports played a huge role in that. I never really felt confident in myself growing up. And those feelings followed me through most of my adult life.
It wasn’t until we moved to Jacksonville, FL that I really started to enjoy walking as a form of exercise. I laugh when I think about the first time Dave and I took a walk “around the neighborhood.” We didn’t really know our way around the neighborhood and ended up on a 4-mile route back home! It was hot and humid and we thought we might die before we made it home! LOL
I’ve come a long way since then. I was walking up to 5 miles many days of the week. Then maybe about a year ago, I read a Jeff Galloway book and I decided it would be ok if I ran, maybe just a little. And then my friend Betty helped me find my comfort zone. And now I have come to really enjoy alternating walking and running… and pushing myself a little beyond that comfort zone sometimes.
I have an hour in the Fitness Room reserved usually on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday each week. I walk on the treadmill for a while, and then I bump up the speed and run for a little while. Sometimes I can run for 1-minute spurts, sometimes only 15 or 30 seconds. But it all feels so good! More recently, I started “warming up” on the elliptical. That seems to be a bit more of a challenge for me and requires me to find some coordination! At first I could only handle a couple of minutes and I’ve now worked myself up to about 8 – 10 minutes.
I signed up for WW (formerly Weight Watchers) at the end of last year, just to give me some structure. This time I’m not so much about losing the weight as I am about healthier food choices. I am not trying to lose weight as fast as I can, I am trying to see what healthy changes I can make and stick with long term…. stop the yo-yo dieting nonsense and keep my blood pressure in check. That’s what really led me in this direction – my blood pressure. Things I have noticed that raise my blood pressure: pain, lack of good sleep, lack of abundant fruits and veggies in my diet. So I am working to stay out of pain, sleep well and eat lots of fruits and veggies. No Funny Bones, though I do enjoy some air popped popcorn at times, and maybe the occasional splurge on guacamole and tortilla chips. I’m still working on the bag of Hershey’s Dark Chocolate Kisses that Paul gave me for Christmas!
I’m looking forward to being outside more. I look forward to meeting Laura in the early mornings for a walk/run on the high school track. I also look forward to walking around Camp Westwood… not too much running goes on there because I’m busy chatting with neighbors I meet along the way!
I’m not sure why I am sharing all this with you. March Madness? Or maybe by sharing with you all I will be more apt to stick with it. Having support is always good! And, as I’ve told my doctors, I don’t want to take medicine unless absolutely necessary. I’d much rather change my diet and exercise habits instead, so I’m working to find what works best to keep my blood pressure in check and keep me healthy.
And I’m feeling much more confident in my ability to do just that!
Best 6 Doctors: Sunshine, Water, Air, Exercise, Diet, Rest