That’s right! On this very day three years ago, weighing 100 pounds more than I do today, I went for my first strength training workout! You may think it odd that I remember the date, but when something completely changes your life forever, you tend to remember it. (It helps that it’s the same date as my grandmother’s birthday.)
I had no idea when I started just how profoundly my life would be changed by adding strength training to it, but changed it was! I’d counted on benefiting from a fitness perspective, but I hadn’t foreseen how much more confidence and emotional strength I’d gain as a result. Had I known, I wouldn’t have been quite so tippy-toe-ish with it.
For kicks and giggles, I thought it might be fun (for me, anyway) to watch the newbie drama as it unfolded on my old, now-defunct blog. You can watch with me, or change channels. Your call.
June 10, 2007:
I bought hand weights today at Target. It’s a convertible set up for 1-3 pound weights. Now I can do more of the targeted workout DVD.
I think I ended up returning those weights. They’re not here now. It just goes to show, though, that everyone has to start somewhere, and I started with 1-3 pound hand weights. More from June 10, 2007:
A couple of changes/challenges for this week:
1) I’m using sparkpeople to record everything I eat. It’s got a neat tool that breaks down all the nutrients and tracks calories. It also compares them to their recommended nutritional goals.
2) I’m calling a gym. I read about this company called “Fitness Together,” which has a local franchise. They apparently have private workout rooms and trainers. I think that’s best for me to start out. I’m not ready for the general public yet. More importantly, I seriously doubt the general public is ready for me. LOL
I sometimes wonder if the general public is ready for me now. LOL The difference between 2007 and 2010 is that I couldn’t give a flyin’ flip.
June 13, 2007:
Note that it took me three days to make the call. I told y’all I followed a tippy toe approach!
But I’m not at my destination, not even close, and today I did something about that. I went to meet the folks at Fitness Together. They weighed and measured and did some godawful pinch test and wrote it all down in a red folder. Then they told me what it was going to cost. Ouch. It’s in line with other trainer fees, but the kicker is that I have to pay it up front. You understand what that means, don’t you? They’re asking me to commit. They’re asking me to invest in myself. That’s low.
It’s a lot of money, but in the end, not really a tough decision. My checkbook is in my purse, and I have my first session with a trainer tomorrow after work. Now I just have to figure out what to wear.
I can’t really remember what I wore, but I do know that at that point, I didn’t even own a sports bra. (Ouch! That was remedied on my lunch hour the second day.) I remember being completely humiliated by all the weighing and measuring, even though I didn’t know the results. They couldn’t even use a regular tape measure; they used one of those retractable metal measures like you use for measuring furniture and other large things.
As embarrassing as it is, I’m going to include a few of my original measurements here:
- Chest: 51″
- Waist: 52.5″
- Hip: 49.5″
You can see why they needed the furniture measuring tape. *sigh* A year later I’d lost almost 40″ in those areas alone. I was On My Way! [For the record, I lost 54 inches total and my body fat went from 36.3% to 22.4%! Size 22 pants to size 6, or 8, (and one stretchy size 4), depending on the maker.]
I don’t share these to encourage atta-girl comments–believe me, I tell myself that every day! :)–but to encourage anyone who’s facing the same struggle that it IS possible to make a significant change to your body and your health, no matter your age. (That’s a nudge to grab a towel and a water bottle and get started!)
June 14, 2007, the first workout:
I survived my first session with the trainer, and I’m happy to report that I didn’t die, nor did I want to die. I’m taking that as a very positive sign. Today’s workout was on the gentler side; tomorrow will probably be more of the same. They’re easing me into it, and I appreciate that.
Little did I know…
June 16, 2007, the first real workout:
Okay, so the second workout was harder–nauseating, demoralizing, painful at times. And that’s not even factoring in the actual exercises. I knew it would be tough, but I hadn’t counted on the mental/emotional side of it. My mind is constantly at war with itself, with one part chanting, “You can’t do this,” while the other side says, “But you ARE doing it.” I’m so busy trying to help the right side win that I find it difficult to focus on the important things like breathing and strength. I hope that changes over time. Next week would be good, since I have three workouts scheduled.
What I don’t mention in my blog post is that I cried all the way home from that first training session. It seemed as though I couldn’t do anything Rachel asked me to do! Even at my most obese, I was generally a happy person, but on that drive home I was utterly miserable, feeling fatter and more worthless than I ever have in my life.[This is when I curse having such a vivid memory. Pardon me while I go find some tissues.]
I managed to put those negative feelings aside by reminding myself to be patient and to feel proud for having done the exercises I could. I love that rather than giving up, I attacked! The three workouts in the following week were tough, but I held my head high, found my sense of humor, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Today I’m going to celebrate three years of strength training by having one awesome workout! I might even throw in some Bulgarian Split Squats! Okay, maybe not, but I thought about it! That’s the advantage of being your own trainer–you can ditch the truly ugly stuff.
But first I’m going to drop a note to trainers Ashely and Rachel, who listened to me, let me whine and vent when I needed to, and helped me off to a great start! I learned a lot and had a whole bunch of fun in the process!
Thanks, Ashley & Rachel!
I’m glad I went through those old posts. It reminds me that change is always possible, even if it’s not always easy. (I’ll have more on that later in the week, via a book review.)
Going through those posts also made me realize that for many, if not all, of you, I’ll have the pleasure of reading YOUR “looking back” posts one of these days. I can’t wait!!
Wishing you all a most amazing week ahead! Remember: everyone has to start somewhere! So just start! With that, I challenge everyone to do just one little thing that’s new-to-you this week. You just never know how your life might be changed!