I saw this quote on my Facebook News Feed the other day -
The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender – Vince Lombardi
This quote came at the right time as I was starting my Friday at 5 in the morning. I had changed my workout plan to start working out in the morning before work and on some days, work out twice day going after work as well. I work out 5-6 times a week and with it being Friday and already had missed Sunday and Tuesday, and I also had plans for after work, I needed to workout. Yet I was so tired. I started playing on my computer until I saw this quote and realized I worked too hard to give up. So I got my butt off the computer and went running around the block.
Growing up, I was the skinny person who could eat anything and not gain weight. I also didn’t exercise. The only exercise I came close to was cheerleading. I remember having to run laps in school and I would always cut the field so I could get a good time. I was never a runner. Soon after high school, that is when the weight crept up. I got my first real boyfriend. He thought I was too skinny and said he is going to help put some meat on my bones. I never thought too much of it. During this time, I was working two jobs, going to college full time and trying to balance time with him. So I always got food to go a.k.a. fast food and if I was with my boyfriend, we always ate out because his mom never cooked. I remember when I was in my first year of college, some of my coworkers where I was working at said that I was getting “hippy”. One even told me I needed to be careful with what I was eating but it didn’t even seem to register that I would gain weight. I was blinded by the fact I had to buy new clothes in larger sizes gradually until it was too late.
Once I realized I had issues with my weight, I quickly turned to those fad diets. The 6 Week Body Makeover, South Beach, Soup Diet, etc. I was trying to find a way to lose the weight fast. I did at first but of course gained it back plus more. I remember me and my boyfriend at the time tried to go walking and I struggled to get up this huge hill in his neighborhood. I felt like I didn’t have time to work out so the best way for me to lose weight was to use one of those quick fixes diets. It took me years to realize if I want to look a particular way, I need to put in actual work.
February 2010 was when I decided I was going to make a lifestyle change for the better. I joined a gym and I started watching what I ate. I started scheduling outings around my workout times. I was teaching at the time and a lot of my coworkers wanted to go out to eat after work, but I started passing on the offers because I had a date with the gym. I would go to group fitness classes because they always motivated me to keep going. I didn’t make a complete lifestyle change, I still ate bad foods for the most part but I gradually added in foods I would never thought about eating in my diet. I had even started running and doing 5ks. I could never run a mile straight when I was younger, not even 1/4th of a mile and now I was running 3.1 miles. By my birthday, October 20, 2010, I had lost 26lbs.
I did gained some of the weight back because I took time off from the gym to focus on my last semester of graduate school then I got on birth control (which Amber talked about in another blog). That did have an effect on my esteem just a little but I refused to prevent me from stopping. I continued to work out and even incorporated more healthy foods and way less junk food (not allowed to keep junk food in the house.) I also see the importance of supplements and changing up your work out to see results.
I’m currently down 16lbs since the beginning of the year and even though it may not seem much in 6 months, I can see a difference working out and eating healthy has on my body. At the weight I’m at now compared to years ago when I weighed about this much, there is a difference in body fat percentage. My cardio has improved especially in the running. I did 4 5ks this year and each one, my finish time just kept decreasing. I now realize I have to set small goals and the weight will not come off overnight. Even if the weight doesn’t come off, when I exercise, it makes me feel a lot better overall and I know that it is keeping me healthy. Just like the quote says, it is harder to surrender or give up on something you work hard for which I’m working hard to live a healthy lifestyle. If you want to make a change for the better, just remember healthy habits are learned in the same way as unhealthy ones – through practice.