This is quite the comedic title if you know me at all. Coming from the girl who didn’t know pickles were cucumbers, that diet coke didn’t have any calories, once weighed herself in college with a 20 lb backpack on and freaked out at the numbers on the scale, and … well I am done making fun of myself because you may all think a bit less of me if I continued ( as if you didn’t already.)
But really, when it comes to health and fitness do you use your brain? Making small changes in normal routines can change your health dramatically. When preparing food, have you ever switched to cooking spray for butter/oil? Used turkey products instead of similar products made of beef? Used flavored creamer instead of half and half with spoonfuls of sugar in your coffee? It takes such little changes but unfortunately not everyone is aware how easy it really is to eat healthier. If you aren’t given the tools, how are you supposed to even know where to start?
I came to a revelation this past week. YES I started using my brain ( shocking I know). For the past 15 months or so we have aspired to be “runners”. Throwing in a few days of strength training and running about 4 days a week was all that it took. Something seemed to be missing but I didn’t give much thought and simply continued on with the regular routine. The first week post Disney M and I , separately but together, thought about the idea of ‘fast’ running. What would it feel like to actually run for time? Is it possible to gain speed without speed work ( speed work makes me puke, literally, I throw up every time I sprint) but just by thinking about moving faster?
Well I gave it a shot. Last weekend I tried it on a 7 mile run. The entire time I only thought about pushing it a little harder, not killing myself, just running a little faster. My much-anticipated front door quickly approached ” HOW DID I DO?” I was absolutely SHOCKED that I had maintained an 8:40 pace for the entire 7 miles. THAT IS almost a minute and a half less than normal! WHAT??? That is all it takes push it a little harder? To be honest, it has been a lot more fun this week to actually push myself instead of settling in the zone of comfort.
The point of this boring and self-absorbed story isn’t to say LOOK WHAT I CAN DO… it is to say LOOK WHAT YOU CAN DO! If you start using your brain when you exercise, you can do things you never knew possible. If you normally spend an entire hour on the elliptical machine at the gym, try jogging for 30 minutes and throwing in some weights for that hour instead. If you have put off physical activity since you are too busy with your kids, take them out and play with them. There is no better way to teach your kids to be healthy than by showing them. Play tag, take a stroll in the jogging stroller, go on family walks, do SOMETHING that is out of your comfort zone and you are sure to begin seeing positive changes physically and mentally.
Or at least this week, try something new physically just to get a glimpse of what you are capable of.