So I started last month off right – I was running regularly and had started a great three (and up to four!)-day-a-week weight routine that would help me become a stronger and better runner. I was eating right, counting my calories on MyFitnessPal and excited to get even below my target goal weight within a month.
Then life happened.
Life gets in the way of our best-laid plans. Whether it’s something good that pops up like a friend’s surprise party or something bad like a family member’s illness, life has a way of making exercise and eating right even harder.
For me, it was putting a “for sale” sign in front of our house. We had spent the last five months house browsing; we absolutely love our house, but it is lacking some aspects that we wanted. So one day, on a whim, I told Kyle I wanted to look at a house that had been on the market for some time; that day we made an offer on it.
That’s when life went wild.
Instead of working on my evening weights, I started cleaning and packing boxes to get our house ready to show. Instead of prepping food for the next day so I would be able to spend my morning running, I was signing papers and meeting with the realtor to get things finalized. My running dropped from four or five runs a week to three. My weights…well…they were eliminated completely.
At first, I was embarrassed and sad that I had slacked so much on my monthly goals. Here I am, trying to encourage other people to exercise and eat right, and I had a full week go by without putting one entry on MyFitnessPal. I went two weeks without doing weights. Who am I to encourage anyone?
But…that’s what we do – that’s what all of us who are trying to live healthily do. We all encourage each other; that’s the whole point of us writing.
Life vs. Exercise
Life does get in the way sometimes. Things will happen. But I’ve learned two valuable lessons through this experience:
1. When life happens – just pick up where and when you can. Some days you’re just going to pray that you didn’t ruin yourself too much from excess food/drink and lack of exercising. Those days are going to happen; but don’t give up! Don’t wait for things to calm down, either – do what you can when you can. Only have 10 minutes? Walk! Lift weights! Stretch! Do anything! Do you have to eat Mexican or Italian (or anything else yummy, carby, and cheesy)? Choose the lightest meal on the menu – or even order just an appetizer (but not the three-dip platter of guac, salsa, and queso…).
2. Prepare yourself. Life will happen. Injury will happen. Situations will come up that will make it harder to eat right or exercise. If you’re injured, rest. You can pick it back up later. If you are going on vacation, just keep everything in moderation. If you’re selling a house, just run outside as much as possible and enjoy your hilly neighborhood.
I don’t want to necessarily see the glass as half empty, but you know that unforeseen circumstances will pop up. You know this is going to happen, so prep so you won’t get so flustered when they do. Or am I the only one who gets flustered when things don’t go exactly to plan?
At any rate, I did get back to running – and back to weights, I’m happy to say. I did start counting calories and being more careful about what I ate. In fact, as far as running goes, I did find a half marathon to train for: the November Dirty South Half Marathon in West Monroe, Louisiana.
If all goes according to plan without injury or illness, this will be the first half marathon I’ve run since 2012. It’s not a “destination” halfie or even a hilly halfie – the halfie is touted as being a flat run, and the marathon is a Boston Qualifier.
For me, it’s a way to keep focused on my exercise while dealing with life. It’s a goal, something to keep in mind, something for which to strive.
Life will get in the way sometimes. Just count on it. But don’t ever give up on your health and wellness. Ever.
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