I’ve never really been a buddy type of person when it comes to exercise. As an adult, physical activity was something I did out of necessity rather than recreation, unless I was swimming/rowing/biking at the cabin. Sure, I’d go on the odd hike or bike ride through Pacific Spirit Park, but mostly, when I started to add exercise into my routine to aid in my weight loss, I chose to fly solo.
In the beginning it was probably out of embarrassment; I was 350 pounds and not too keen on being seen jiggling on a treadmill at the gym, so I stuck to pilates or using the stationary bike by myself in my room. As time went on and I had lost enough weight to feel like I could add running into the mix (really, the thrift sale exercise bike broke and I needed a new form of cardio), I cherished the time alone. I’d plug in those ear buds and crank whatever album I was feeling that day and let my legs carry me as I sorted out the thoughts that had been plaguing me since my last run. It was a time of centering, of getting back to basics and working out my frustrations, which was good because the more angry I was about something, the faster I’d run. I got myself into a groove of running 5-6 nights a week that helped me drop 150 pounds in just under a year and a half.
Then I got lazy. Well, not right away. I dialed back a bit on the activity, only running 3 days a week instead of 6, and I maintained my new weight for a couple years. The yoga class I attended once a week with my mom and my sister was about as close to having a workout buddy as I’d come thus far. Eventually I started running less and less and sitting on my ass more and more, and hey, you know what? I gained weight! Funny how that works, huh?! I’m nowhere near where I was. I’d never let myself get that far gone again, but I’ve probably got another 5o pounds to lose, 25 of which is weight I’ve put on since I stopped running so much.
So why is it so much harder this time to ramp up the exercise and git ‘er dun when it was so easy before?
Time for a new approach, it seems. I was resistant, but I’m embracing the buddy system and using my roommate Kathleen (@chaotic_kat) as a motivational tool. She took me to yoga and, after digging my first class at Semperviva Yoga (@sempervivayoga), I signed up for their 30 day summer dealie thing. This means I have 30 days to do as much yoga as I possibly can, and I’m going to do it, dammit!
The rules: I will go to yoga every day, no matter what. If I miss a day (for which I will have to have a brilliant excuse), I will have to make it up by going to two classes on another day, or running at least 5km.
That’s it. Simple. Doing yoga, becoming more confident, getting fit and feeling good about myself. Sounds like an amazing plan to me.
Kathleen leaves for Hawaii on Saturday, which means I’ll be all alone next week. If anybody wants to join me, let me know and we’ll make it happen! If you live far away and want to keep tabs on my day to day ruminations on the subject, check out the #30DaysofYoga tag on Twitter. Keep me motivated, people! You are all now my workout buddies!