I like to think that I’ve always been an active person. I’ve gone through my droughts – you know, the endless months of telling myself that I should be working out but the couch or my bed looks far more appealing. That being said, in my younger years, being active looked a lot differently than it does today.
In high school I was a two-sport athlete and pretty much played soccer year round. After I graduated, I started lifting weights and training at a collegiate level which really upped my game and changed my body in a good way. I have always loved running, and continued with that into my twenties. I’ve even continued to play soccer, though not nearly as competitively.
The thing is, I’ve never been able to keep a good routine with any of these things. When it comes to working out, I stay on track for a month or so, and then usually let it fall by the wayside for a while. I will pick it back up, but I’ve rarely been consistent in my pattern.
That is until this year.
In February I asked my mom to buy me a jogging stroller for my birthday. She laughed a little, because, really, who wants a stroller for their birthday? I was using the excuse that I didn’t have one as a reason why I wasn’t being active, so I figured if I got one, that would change.
The first few times I went out with Reese, we jogged. Well, we jogged for a half mile, then walked until I could breathe again. Postpartum workouts ain’t for the faint at heart.
I felt myself losing my motivation again. I wasn’t enjoying it, and I wasn’t seeing results fast enough.
Then one day, I decided that I wasn’t going to jog, I was just going to walk and enjoy myself. I put on a podcast and walked. I walked for four miles. It took me almost 90 minutes and it felt so good.
I’ve walked that same path about four times per week every week since. That’s averaging about 16 miles per week. Every time, I put a podcast on, I make googly eyes at Reese, and I walk. I have cut my time down by about a half hour. Sometimes, I’m even so motivated that I jog a bit, but I never pressure myself. I let my mind wander and I brainstorm – ideas for my business, ideas for my blog posts, dreams for our future. I just let myself go and see where it takes me.
This routine – this simple routine of walking with Reese and listening to podcasts – has been the only activity that I’ve been able to keep for longer than a few months in my entire adult life. Why?? Because I’m enjoying myself and putting zero pressure on myself to get better.
And the best part? I’ve seen results! I’m now fitting in jeans that I haven’t fit in since before I had Finn! I’m below my pre-pregnancy weight. I have played 90 minutes of soccer each Sunday and felt great. I have muscle tone in my legs. And most notably, my mind is fresh and I have so much energy.
I always thought that working out and being active meant pushing yourself to the extreme for 30 minutes so at the end you wanted to puke and you felt sore for days on end. But that always ended in a lack of motivation. And I never looked forward to it.
I can honestly say that I look forward to my walks every single day! It’s completely changed my outlook about being active and staying active. You don’t have to push yourself to a place that makes you want to quit, instead, you can enjoy yourself and look forward to it! This has also motivated me in other workouts as well. I’m starting to lift, and start with zero pressure. I’m starting to run more, and with no goals to hit or miss. It’s nice to be nice to your body… it has more than paid off!