Due to recent travels, I have been forced to neglect my blogging; however I hope to get back into the swing of things ASAP.
On Saturday I traveled with my parents to visit my family in Kentucky and left on Monday. The drive is around 5 ½ hours from my parents’ house in Lewis County and about 6 hours and 45 minutes from my house. Because we had to get home for work on Tuesday, we were forced to cram a whole lot of eating socializing into 1 ½ days. This also meant a slim chance for any calorie burning except from running our yaps. I won’t bore anyone with the details, but it was a nice trip. I spent quite a bit of time with my cousin, aunt and catching up with my grandpa.
For whatever reason, I’m not really into sleeping in when I travel. Even though I know I’m exhausted and need to sleep, I generally get no more than 5 or 6 hours when I’m away from home and blame the combination of excitement and feeling strange sleeping the day away in someone else’s house. On Sunday, after a very limited amount of sleep, I woke up around 7 a.m. to find nobody else was up. Since I was staying with my aunt, I assumed she’d be up getting ready for church, but no such luck. I decided to seize the opportunity and sneak in a few sets of my favorite Pilates moves. I did a mix of legs, core, and stretching exercises and eventually got busted by my aunt, who proceeded to laugh at me. Later, I had another opportunity to go for a classic dirt road walk back to my Grandpa’s old barn. I wasn’t speed walking or anything, but getting up and moving around a bit still made me feel great. It also got me thinking about the fitness lessons I’ve learned…
1. Don’t do something you hate. If you hate running, avoid it. If you despise the stationary bike, find something else to do. When trying to lose weight and get into shape, a lot of people make the mistake of diving into the tough stuff and end up really hating the process. They either try tackling something too difficult for their level, or they expect too great of results too quickly. Find something you enjoy (even if it is just going for an afternoon walk) and keep at it. It’s the easiest way to form lasting fitness habits.
2. Listen to your body. Again, the mistake people often make (myself included) is trying too much too soon. When I first started working out, I’d try to go on these long runs and would end up too sore to do anything for the rest of the week. I didn’t enjoy the process and ended up taking nearly a year off from running. Thankfully, when I decided to give it another go, I eased into it, making the whole process much more enjoyable.
3. A little can go a long way. I used to think that if I couldn’t do some serious exercising while on vacation or traveling that I might as well just eat junk and become a bum. What I didn’t realize was that even doing a few push-ups or stretches gave me the motivation to make better health choices throughout the day. Although I didn’t eat anything terribly healthy after my Sunday morning Pilates session, I did notice a difference in my portions. If you travel somewhere and don’t have access to a treadmill for your normal cardio routine, simply take a quick walk around the area or crank out a few sit-ups to keep your body responding.
4. It’s okay to take a few days off. Life happens and you can’t beat yourself up if you don’t even have the time (or energy) for those few sit-ups or push-ups. Some days I come home from work and don’t even want to think about anything other than curling up on the couch. The decision to lace up my shoes and head back out is my own and I usually will just avoid a workout if I know I’m going to have a bad attitude about it. (Though my boyfriend always reminds me that I always feel so much better when it’s over.) Taking a day off once in a while is fine, but remember, the longer you stay away from the gym, the harder it will be to get back.