Tuesday, September 21, 2010

New Goals That Yield Surprises!

For the longest time, I have fought the urge to join a gym or a health club. I just could not fathom spending so much money a month on something that I may not "do" fully. In the past, when I would go to a health club with a friend, I pretty much just did the treadmill. Now, my mind has continually counted how many monthly gym payments it would take to buy a treadmill for my house. In my mind, it was cheaper in the long run to just buy a stupid treadmill to walk on.

With the hectic lifestyle that Aaron and I have led over the years, owning a treadmill was not an option. Imagine the cost of transporting a treadmill across the Pacific, or letting it rot with everything else in a storage unit. Or the situation is what we are in now - we just don't have room for one.

So, I've gotten over my hesitation to spend money on a gym. I joined one a few blocks away while they had an open house special and I got a month-to-month membership for the same monthly cost as a full-year membership. Normally, it's at least $20 more per month.

Since I have made the monetary commitment, I have set goals to actually attend the gym. My first goal involves waking up early and going to the gym and walk on the treadmill for one hour. Starting this past Saturday, I got up earlier than normal for a Saturday and checked day one off the list. Day two, I decided to see if I could do the elliptical machine and alternate that with the treadmill. I learned that I am more out of shape than I thought. After 15 minutes, I thought I was going to die. I spent most of Sunday coughing like I had asthma. No more elliptical machine for a while. Day 3 and Day 4 were during the work week, and brought the un-Godly hour of 5:30 AM into my life... Surprising enough, I found that on both of these days, I woke up BEFORE the alarm went off. Another surprise, I'm ACTUALLY awake... Normally, I take forever to wake up. I may be functioning at 8:30 when I report to work, but I'm not really "there" until around 10:00...

As a continuation of my goals, after I've been walking on the treadmill every day for 2 weeks, I'll try the elliptical machine again. Once I get up to where I can handle that for at least 30 minutes, I'll alternate my morning routine with that machine, as it burns more calories and has less impact on my knees than the treadmill. The gym I joined also has classes I can take. This Sunday, I'll take in the Gentle Yoga class to see if I will integrate that into my schedule. As I get healthier and more confident that I can do more without injuring myself, I'll add in some weight/resistance training to tone my muscles. Maybe, I'll even add a Spinning class... But, for right now, I'm taking it slow.

One last surprise - My allergy attacks have subsided (and as I type this, I start sneezing, I think I jinxed myself). I'm not sure if it is due to a change in the weather as it cools down for fall or my new routine, but I'll take it! The last month or two, I've been having severe allergy attacks at least every other week. They are so severe, that it takes several days for my respiratory system to recover...

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