Monday, July 2, 2012

I've Got the Itch Again

Yup! That's right. I totally have the itch again. I wasn't sure how long after I had Mckenna it would be before I had the itch again, but last week I figured out the answer...8.5 months. I'm ready to do it again. I finally want to work out....

....what did you think I was talking about ;-)

I have been working out ever since Mckenna was born. I started walking when she was just a week old and was running a week or so after that. However, I did it because I felt like I should and felt like I had to, but not because I truly wanted to. Honestly, I was pretty sick of working out. I worked out like a champ while preggo. I ran 6 days a week, lifted 5 days a week, and did some other form of light cardio in addition 5-6 days a week. I worked out somewhere between an hour and two hours 5-6 days a week. I loved it. It was what made me feel energized and "normal." I felt so good pregnant because I stayed active. I felt like I could do anything because I was in such great shape. I'm certain that is why my pregnancy, labor and delivery were so wonderful. But to be honest, when I had Mckenna, I got out of my normal routine and I was tired, and I simply didn't WANT to do it. So I did the bare minimum to stay in shape, but I hated every second of it. Also, I got my pre-pregnancy body back quickly (in part because I stayed in great shape, in part because I didn't gain too much), and so I wasn't working to get back into shape or to lose weight, I was simply having to work out to maintain the shape I was in from how hard I had worked during pregnancy.

All that said, last week something clicked again. I actually truly enjoyed being at the gym. I did a few extra cardio classes because I wanted to! It was a great feeling. I had picked up what I was doing and was working out 5 days a week, lifting and doing cardio, ever since Mckenna was a couple months old. But I wasn't really enjoying it. It felt like a chore. But last week I found myself looking forward to the gym. It was such a cool thing. I hope this keeps up because it sure makes exercise easier.

So why am I writing a blog about this? Because I learned a couple things that may be helpful:

1. Sometimes you just don't feel like working out, but it's important to fake it til you make it! Continuing to work out, even if it was scaled back a bit, helped keep me in shape so that when I was ready to go full-bore, I could. It also kept me sane, even if I didn't know it and hated it. Exercise is simply good for the mind...even if you don't like it or want to. So I learned if you just do it while you hate it, it's just a phase and it will pass.

2. Switching up what you're doing can help you fall back in love with exercise. I was dreading my runs. I hated doing it. So last week I asked myself, "why not try different cardio?" There's no reason I can't take a break from running for a month, do different cardio during that time, and start running when I start missing it again. Which leads to my next lesson learned:

3. Switching up what you're doing is good for your body. This last week, my body HURT!!! Holy cow, I was one, big sore muscle. My body wasn't used to step class and kick boxing and riding bikes and walking hills. And you know what? I LOVE SORE MUSCLES!! It means it's working. So switching up my cardio was the best thing I could do for my body to work different muscles, differently. It will be beneficial in the long run.

4. You eventually get your mojo back. Even if you have to fake it for a long time, you will eventually fall back in love with working out. Now that my mojo is back...I'm going to capitalize on it and get my butt into the gym even more!!