Join Date: May 2004
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Have you tried different types of exercise? I hate going to the gym, it feels like a chore and I can't wait to leave.
Aerobics at home, again, I can't stand it.
But, I could bike all day and love it. The same with walking, and I walk at a good clip, I just put on my headphones and go. I can do an hour no problem.
Rather than sticking with a routine you hate, try different types of exercise until you find one you like.
I think part of the key is figuring out a way not to view exercise as punishment, and also to not think of exercise as just a way to lose weight (and that it's not valuable if you don't lose "enough" weight.) You may have to be very creative to find an activity that you just enjoy doing, but if you can find something that just makes you feel even the least bit interested in doing it, that may help.
I am a running junky - but I don't always feel great right after or during a workout. I do notice when I'm running regularly, though, that I feel better overall - my energy is better, I sleep better, and I'm less anxious. Also, I feel better about myself - proud that I can stick to a routine, proud that I can run as far as I can, etc. I don't always get an endorphin rush from the actual exercise session, but I can still feel good about my activity level.
I think people who have negative athletic experiences (always picked last, not comfortable with your body image, etc.) often learn to view exercise as a punishment for not eating as well as you should, or enjoying food, or gaining too much weight while pregnant, or whatever. The key is to move away from that kind of thinking. I know that is so much easier said than done!
Also, letting go of any rigid expectations about what exercise must look like help. If you only have 15 minutes, taking a 15 minute walk is better than taking a 15 minute sit on the couch. What about a parent-child class of some kind? What about putting silly kids' music on and dancing with the kids 15 minutes a day? What about just wearing a pedometer and trying to up your daily steps? What about something non-aerobic to start, like yoga or tai chi, to just focus on feeling good in your body? If you never lose a single pound but doing some sort of activity helps you to feel better about yourself, than it is absolutely worth it. And folks of any weight are healthier if they are fitter, even if they are not skinnier. Better to be overweight and able to walk up 2 flights of stairs than over weight and not able to walk to the bathroom without breathing hard!
Oh, I will scream...... typed out a long reply and hit some random button and it was all gone..... :
Ok, trying again....
You have yourself beat with the attitude. You have every reason in the world why nothing will work. So it won't. Your mind is very powerful; what you believe will happen usually will. You believe that exercise hurts, is impossible to keep up, is bad and hard and everything else - so it is.
I used to give a lot of the same excuses you do now. Not athletic, too busy, little kids, weather is bad, too expensive, I'd be embarrassed, and on and on. So I didn't exercise and kept eating and kept gaining weight, slowly over the years. Ugh.
My best girlfriend in town drug me (dragged??) to the gym. I told her ONE night and she was never to so much as ask me again. I walked in and loved it and have been going for over a year - usually six days a week.
Why I now love it:
1. time with my friends - we visit!
2. music I love is playing
3. opportunity to read junky magazines or the newspaper or whatever
4. lost weight while still eating mostly what I want (within reason)
5. new clothes for slimmer me
7. can keep up with my kids/don't huff running upstairs yet again today
8. good example for my kids
9. dh likes it/it is good for my sex life honestly...
10. an hour of me time each day - no laundry or ringing phone or nose to wipe
11. proud of myself for doing something I previously believed impossible
It took me a LONG time to get the endorphin thing - and I still think it is pretty mild for me. But I love it anyway. You need to get your mind out of the way, and just do it. Don't just make it a habit - open your mind to the option of actually liking it.
Remember the old adage "if you think you can or think you can't, you're right".
Can you have natural childbirth if you don't believe you can? Can you run a marathon without believing it is possible? Let go of the reasons why you'll hate it and open your mind to it becoming something you actually enjoy. Then follow all the good ideas about starting slowly (though I do think that going every day - or almost every day - is easier than 3 days a week), working out with a friend, etc.
What about swimming, can you swim? It's really easy on the body and joints, and doesn't leave you super sore and stiff unless you REALLY over-do it. It's hard to be too klutzy in water, and if you are, nobody will notice, LOL! Plus everyone is really just focused on their lane and you can't easily observe others when you are all swimming.
I agree that the battle needs to be won in your head before it can be won in your body!
Thanks, I have thought about that, esp with my back issues. My biggest thing about swimming. I am always ravenous afterwards, like I want to eat everything in sight! Is that normal?
I was in the same place as well, after having children and hated working out. I used to be such a jock, but the thought of having to get myself ready, the boys,find a time the gym daycare had an opening, get them in, deal with the crying, it just was so overwhelming. I hated the thought of stairing at a wall while unning in place, or getting water up my nose while swimming, or my knee acts up when I bike etc. etc. etc.. But I have a neighbor/friend who started going with me, and setting up a schedule there for the both opf us. We vary between spin class and yoga. I have to go because I know she is there counting on me, and we picked classes that I would enjoy. I have also made other aquaintences there and talk to the instructors incase she is not there. I would have slacked had I not had someone to go with and pick *fun*classes with. I truly think that if you have a partner to go with, or someone who you know will be there, it makes it more of a time to hang out with the girls or gossip and have fun while doing it.
Also, the only *fell good* endorphins I get are right after a class. By the time I get home I'm sore, and tired. But even through that, my stomach is starting to flatten again, and I can see an outline of calf muscles again. Maybe if you have a goal like a mini triathlon like the Danskin womens or a small local race or activity to gear yourself up for it would seem more worht it?
I just decided that I was going to pretend to be like them until I was actually like them.
Also, between dd1 and dd2 I lost 60 pounds (186 to 126). The first 30 pounds lost and I was still wearing the same pants! They were clearly baggy but I was still in them. The bigger sizes have a lot of pounds from one to the next. Going from a (very tight) 16 to a 14 took forever. Don't get discouraged.
I know where you're coming from. I was always one of the last kids to get picked for teams in P.E. class. Ack! It was horrible. The team captains would have a conversation like this and of course I was nearby so I could hear it. "No, you TAKE her!"..."No, I don't want her...you take her." I didn't help myself anyway because I was very bookish, klutzy, and completely disinterested in sports of any kind. I loved the days when the teacher had us count of 1, 2, 1, 2, and all the 1s were on one team and all the 2s in another.
173 at 5'4" is someplace I've been. I'm the same height and I've weighed as much as 181. I distinctly remember seeing the scale hit 181 when I was at one of my appointments during my 35th or 36th week of pregnancy and I was shocked. I didn't realize I had put on that much weight. DH was standing beside me and his eyes popped for he weighs 180. Pre-pregnancy, I didn't bother taking my weight. We didn't even own a scale. It was a defense mechanism. I knew I had put on weight after marriage but I was in such a denial about it. I told myself it was about 10 pounds but in reality I started my pregnancy being 20 pounds overweight. I wish I had been in better shape because all the b/p problems may not have happened. Anyway, from 181 I managed to get down to 163 without doing much. But I was stuck at 163 for a long time. Then, a friend told me about Weight Watchers. I hadn't joined a group like WW before and I resisted since I'm more of a solo dieter. WW has really helped me. You don't have to buy their food. You don't even have to speak up at the meetings. Even if all you do is go in for the weekly weigh-in and leave, you'll still benefit, IMO. Just knowing someone is going to weigh me every Monday evening at 6 pm is very motivating! They're very nice about the weigh-in btw. Anyway, I'm down to 148 now and losing. I couldn't have done it without exercise either. I tried for almost a year to do it just by diet alone but it was VERY hard. I also exercise to music. I can't work out without my iPod. Music is a wonderful distraction during exercise.
You've gotten some great suggestions so I'll just add to what you've been told. Exercising at home can be fun IF you have the right tape. I know what you mean about feeling weird working out by yourself. I don't like an audience when I'm working out to tapes. The one time I allowed DH to stay in the room he made a comment like "you're not doing it like she is in the video ...you need to do xyz" so I made him leave and now he's not allowed to stay when I do tapes/DVDs. Have you checked out http://www.videofitness.com/ ? It's an excellent site for home exercisers. They have very comprehensive reviews of all the workout tapes out there. They also have a message board. I joined the site years ago and I've found the honest reviews very helpful.
I noticed that you didn't say anything bad about walking in your previous posts. Can your DH watch the kids for an hour while you go for a walk around the neighborhood? Then, you don't have to take the children. It can be your me time for the day. Walking doesn't require much. Just a good pair of athletic shoes and comfortable clothes.
All I can say is...
Are you my twin? I could have written your OP and most of your subsequent ones! To bad you don't live here (or do you?) - we could be "I hate to work out but feel like I have to anyway" buddies!
Thanks for all the good suggestions mamas! Keep em coming!