I wrote this post on a Sunday almost seven weeks ago. To tell you the truth, it feels like it’s been a lot longer than that. The fact that it has only be seven weeks is suddenly very encouraging.
It’s kind of a weird place I’m in. I am not doing the cardio very often. Well, actually, I’m not really doing the cardio at all. But I’ve been extremely consistent with the strength work. So far, I’ve only missed this past Monday, and only because I had a gastrointestinal bug and didn’t want to embarrass myself in public. That will change after the holidays; my plan is to start getting up very early to do the cardio first thing in the morning … although, as I sit here typing this, I am realizing that I know perfectly well I’m not going to get up at 5am and workout before I go in to the office. That is a plan that’s setting me up for failure.
So, instead, I’m going to do my cardio when I get home from the gym. I just read somewhere that doing cardio after strength work is better than doing it before the strength work. Not sure why that is; anybody have any thoughts on that or has anybody read anything about it that they’d care to share?
Anyway, so here’s my frustration: I’m not seeing results in terms of my weight. But, after seven week, I am seeing results in terms of the way my clothes fit. I’ve suddenly got all kinds of room in the slacks I wear to work, for example. Blouses are looser around my arms. I generally just look better in my clothes. I am not convinced that I look better out of my clothes but that’s a conversation for a later date.
Suffice it to say that I’m a long way from being a #fitgirl. A long way.
One of the things I really admire about Gina is her ability to really push herself HARD. Of course, I realize that she is a lot farther along the fitness ride than I am and I do try not to be unreasonable. But she can really set a high bar for herself and push those extra few reps or discipline herself to get that extra bit of proper form out of herself. I always tell myself that I am going to but then I get there and I get tired and fail to go the extra mile. I’ll keep trying and eventually I’m sure I’ll get there. But it’s hard not to feel a bit discouraged.
See, this is why it’s not good to compare yourself to people. I don’t get inspired by other people’s success stories. I am much more inclined to conclude that “it’s hopeless”, especially if it’s one of those real extreme, “I used to weigh 400 pounds and now I have only 2% body fat!” sort of success stories.
My challenge, as I work out with Gina, is to be realistic. Gina has a goal. So do I but my goal is very different from her’s. I have no ambition to be an athlete. I want, very simply, to lose weight and to get myself to the point that I enjoy dancing and working out like I used to. (Well, and to get myself to the point where I don’t hate my body and my looks anymore.) What it means is that I have to keep remembering that success for me is not going to mean the same thing as success for Gina. If I end up with a six-pack, that’ll be nice but not necessary. It means that it doesn’t make sense for me to try to hold myself to the same fitness standards as Gina does. That is especially true when I’m just starting out, massively overweight, while she is willow-wand slim and has been working out for the better part of a year.
Like I said, I try to be reasonable.
And so my fitness adventure continues. Around mid-month, I will have been at this for over 8 weeks and Gina has promised to take a picture to let me see my progress so far. This time, I will look. I just have to keep telling myself not to expect miracles so that I am able to appreciate how much progress I have made so far.