This caught my eye at the grocery store while I was loading up on chips.
For a while now, I have to tell you, dear readers, my body has been craaaaaaving more exercise. I've always been fairly active but have let it slide since the last baby, um, which was
almost 3 years ago.
Intentional fitness goes in spurts for me, fitness is a journey. Over the years I've had various gym memberships and for me the novelty always wears off in the getting there. So I know that's not the answer at this time in my life. I have too many littles at home that trying to get away is not practical for me. I realize there are ways around that for some people, but not worth the effort for me.
The other thing I've come to realize about health and fitness is that diet and exercise fads come and go, its more important to create the habit of an active lifestyle - it has to be who you are. It has to be choosing the family walk or bike ride rather than hunkering down on the couch (or at the sewing machine) for the night. It has to be planning physical activities that are fun, like a trek to a favorite hiking spot, a family skate in the afternoon, or a trip to the river to throw rocks with the kids. It has to be the realization that I probably can't block off two hours a day for intentional cardio, but I can grab 10 minutes on the treadmill, like I did this morning, or a couple sets of bicep curls in the kitchen using soup cans. Think that's crazy? The statistics say otherwise. So I know I can do this. Really, I can. For me, it has to be about choosing small things in my limited amount of time that will add up to bigger things in the course of a week.
I bought a new workout tank top. It's really pretty. Clothing is how my husband lured me into the world of golf. Apparently it works for home fitness, too.
This particular issue of Prevention magazine, focusing on being fit in your 40s, has been inspiring to say the least. So much motivating information. They offer a ton of options for a 28 day transformational challenge! This is really exciting to me! Transformational? Really? Essentially all I need to do is plan for 2 1/2 hours of break-a-sweat physical activity over the course of a week, broken down any way I want. I can do that. I know I can. I'd say my cardio health is pretty good, but where I lack at this stage of the game is muscle tone. I need a muffin-top blast! I'd really like to have some sort of a waistline again. The last baby did me in for that. Muscle tone is super-important in your 40s, because that's when we tend to lose muscle and lose estrogen, which leads to a decrease in our metabolic rate, which leads to what is fondly termed ... the menopot. And a whole lot of other nasty unhealthy things.
Secret revealed: Either I gained two pounds while in Arizona for a month this spring or I have wild morning-to-evening weight fluctuations. It was probably the sitting by the pool and drinking iced coffees with whipped cream I'm quite sure. The whole point of going to Arizona was to be able to stay active in the good weather! Either way, when I happened to weigh myself in June, a month after returning from Phoenix, I was shocked to see a number higher than what I normally ever see. Because I've held the exact same weight for 17 years. To me that's a signal that those midlife changes are a-coming, my metabolic rate has decreased and I need to nip what I can in the bud before it gets out of hand. Hey, I've never struggled with weight in my life, aside from a 4-month and 20 pound stint in Germany I kid you not, but we had an amazing cook. I've struggled with other things, but never with weight. I'd hardly call 2 pounds a struggle, but I do consider it a prompt to change things up. I have five kids, the youngest is not even three, and I want to do everything in my power to be healthy and alive for my babies as they grow up. You know??? Don't you have a vision of yourself in your golden years? I do, and I realize the decisions I make now will significantly impact those years.
So I've decided to go for it. I'm taking on the 28-day transformational challenge in an intentional way, incorporating the metabolism-boosting workouts. All the statistics presented in the magazine are what got me. I'm so motivated. Before starting, they suggest you track your baseline activity for about a week to see what is your normal, take your measurements, and set some realistic goals. I'll definitely do that in the next few days, but I'm not really waiting to begin. This weekend, I'll be able to kick start the process as I walk all over Manhattan with my husband and big kids, oh yeah!
Here are my goals for November 1st, which is about a month away:
- lose those two pesky pounds!
- reduce my waist size by 1 inch * this is my most desired goal!
- reduce arm/leg measurement by 1/2"
- look more toned and feel better about myself
- be kind to myself if I don't succeed in all of the above, knowing I'm much better off for adopting and maintaining a healthier lifestyle
Wish me luck or better yet, pleeeeease join me!
One last aside, we are headed to New York City on Thursday morning - despite the government shut-down - so please pray for travel mercies and lots of good memories!!