Thursday, July 14, 2016


I just searched Pinterest for "gym hacks."
I really did.
No, I'm not dying, have not been kidnapped or ransomed, and I am of sound mind [ish] and making this statement of my own free will.

I have never been athletic. My mom tried to make me stick with team sports, because she said it taught you how to interact with people. But between all the moving, I never did get to build the relationships you're supposed to build. Every school I'd switch to a different sport, never really able to stick with any of them. I tried softball, basketball, soccer... couldn't stick with 'em. Did not enjoy sports, or the team aspect. We finally agreed that I'd start doing theatre instead of sports to work on speaking instead.

I have never enjoyed working out. I hated PE class, and actually, because of transfer credits I almost didn't graduate because I was short one semester. In college, I went to the gym a couple times, felt alienated and ostracized, knew I didn't belong in that world. After college, mostly the same. Never happy with my body, but couldn't find some way to work out that I enjoyed to a degree that would overpower the "meh". I had no inspiration, no drive, no desire... Well, when it came to sports and crap, I mean.

Then I ended up needing to join the military. I had to get into shape before I could leave for bootcamp even. I went to the gym twice a day because I needed to. Not because I wanted to. But, it was during this time I was introduced to heavybag boxing workouts. The gym I went to [no longer in business] had a heavy bag room, with a grid of maybe 5 by 5 bags. There were a few different classes, and some were more like cross training, or actual workouts in preparation for boxing. But my favorite one was taught by a rock hard, insane, lady in her 50s. She was intense. It was like circuit training plus boxing plus step aerobics plus oh yeah running laps. I loved the hell out of it.

Fast forward. Hated working out all through the military, but was able to suffer through it because it was a "need" not a want. I had the external pressure, extrinisic motivation if you've seen the documentary 'Happiness' [not that other film with Phillip Seymour Hoffman, that was... messed up] but point is, even though I couldn't find the motivation to enjoy working out, I could rationalize it or force myself to get through it. Somewhere in the middle of my military years, I started going to hot yoga. I'd always hated the idea of yoga, it seemed somehow inferior or lazy. I also hated the stereotype of people who went to yoga often.

Well, I fell in love with hot yoga. Or more specifically, I fell in love with Expand Yoga. Because I've gone to other studios since them... And I've done yoga on a carrier after the sun has gone down in the middle of the Persian Gulf. And none of that holds up to the way Expand makes me feel. I've been off-and-on since they opened. When they moved locations, I was ecstatic. I've been going to yoga somewhat consistently for the past 3-4 months, and I am slightly embarrassed to admit how much I enjoy it now and how much of a positive change it has had on my life.

Babe has, to different degrees, joked and or suggested I work out with him. Our awesome roomie has a weight set that he shares with the house. I hate lifting weights more than pretty much everything ever [except maybe Pilates]. It is just not for me. I find it tedious as hell. But. A friend of ours has a heavy bag. When I found this out, I started to get excited. Completely forgot about it. Then tonight, I got the urge to listen to MSI. And I remembered what a great band they would be for boxing. And my goofy ass started shadowboxing in the bathroom. That's when my smart brain caught up with the rest of me, and figured out a plan for how to buy a new setup for friend [who was wanting to upgrade] and have him then "sell" us his "old" one. Tadah!! Well, I started looking online at boxing gear, and come to find out, it's not even that expensive! The store didn't have the size our friend wanted, but turns out even starting from scratch it's not that expensive to get into. We already have the other equipment [weights and elliptical] moved to the garage, and storing a friend's items comes with courtesy use of the tv in the garage... things started coming together in my head and I... actually... got excited about fitness.

Yes. Me. That's how I know that it's what I need to do. Because it's the one thing I actually get excited about, besides yoga. Because I know that if I actually enjoy this, and have a drive within myself to do it, then I actually stand a much greater chance of sticking with it. We've been putting off trying out one of the ilovekickboxing gyms, but the thought of going back to a class kind of sparked some social anxiety. But instead, me and my love can kick ass, make our own playlists, and enjoy time together and privacy by boxing at home.

I recently had a friend post about her "third workout of the day," a concept that just blew my mind. I tried to explain how envious I was of her attitude, and this is how she responded:
"I mean it's all mental in a way. I've hit funks here and there and went for long periods of time without working out due to stress of being to tired from work to have the energy. But even now, I'm stressed to the limit at my new command but working out gives me that release. You gotta just tell yourself that you're gonna be the change and you're gonna do it."

And the way for me to do that....... is obviously boxing. Because it's the only thing that made me FEEL. The idea of boxing in the morning, walking the dog, and going to hot yoga at night doesn't scare me, doesn't turn my stomach, or make me want to hide... it sounds like actual FUN.

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