That's right, I said it. It was easy.
I had originally thought that this was going to turn into some epic adventure and I was going to be sharing long emotional tales of reaching new levels of self awareness through exercise and the "challenge" of making it happen and sticking to it. I even, up until the moment that I sat down to write this post, thought that I might have something more enlightened to say. And then it hit me, this has been easy to do. For me. It might be different for you, but I hope not.
So instead of a sentimental journey I am going to leave you with a few pointers that I have discovered along the way. I am not an expert, but these things worked for me.
* Forgive yourself and adapt as needed--the original rules I set for myself were to workout nearly every single day for the entire 28 days. The very first week I started the girls got sick and then I got sick so I was messed up from the very beginning. I could have just said "shod it all" (that's British) but I didn't, I rearranged my own rules and continued on and didn't feel guilty about it. Much.
* Find some support--I spoke up on Facebook and here on my blog and asked others to join in for two reasons, one to make myself accountable and two, to find people who would kind of cheer me on along the way. A really unexpected bonus came from this; I found a running partner who is really quite perfect for me in that she runs much differently (better) than I ever did and she is also positive and encouraging and most-most importantly..she shows up! We are in the middle of training for a 10k--say wha?!
* Push yourself, but don't kill yourself--start slowly. You won't do any workouts at all if you find yourself with a sprained back or swollen knees or disjointed shoulders at the very start of your "challenge". Listen to your body, use common sense, save the hard sprints and the heavy weights for a little further down the line. Right after that first week of illness I jumped in with added zeal fueled by guilt from the thought of failure and my knees and my ankle jumped up and said, "slow down old woman, we got a few + years in us still but not at this pace!". Yes, they really did say that.
* Release any expectations--so hard to do. I have not lost any weight, I still do not fit into my skinny jeans from two years ago and some things still shake like Jello squares. It's ok. I feeeel good. I look better. I have more energy and I have more patience with everyone, even the ridiculous LA drivers. I try very hard to just make a plan for tomorrow to do something; a hike-a run-a few sit-ups and stretches and not turn it into a big production. You can add on and change as you go.
I have more but sometimes less is more so I will leave it at that for now. Besides, this is the longest post of the century and I am starting to bore myself.
I have love for all of you, (there's the emotion, I knew it was in there somewhere), and I say thanks for the support, the "likes", the messages, the e-mails and the joiners.
This is me, happy.
I really really hope that if you have been meaning to fit exercise back into your life, or into your life for the first time, that you find a way to do it, a way that works for you and I want you to know you can count on me for encouragement--"ENCOURAGEMENT!"--as the yoga dude from Couples Retreat would say.
Happy Wednesday, see you on the hill.