If you’ve read my “Journey” page – you will see this is what I have written about how I got started with exercise. Please realize, this is only PART of how I got started, but I am going to write a blog post about each arm that lead to success (Mindset, Menu, Move, My Tribe).
I made a commitment to start to move my body. Exercise seemed so out of reach for me, because my previous successful experience with exercise had only been through a $500 a month gym/personal trainer combination. But I decided to try. My sister sent me the DVD’s to do the 21-day fix through Beachbody and Autumn motivated me every morning to just hold on for 30 minutes. Then, I started walking my dogs. Even when it was raining (BTWs – pugs in raincoats are SUPER cute). Then Lizzy, who was then 13 years old, said she was going to take over as my personal trainer. We did our first race together. Then our second. And more. And my BFF Shae signed us up for our first Ashley Horner Transform You Challenge, and we started lifting weights in my garage. Which morphed into becoming a transformation challenge winner and an Ashley Horner ambassador, earning me 1,000s of Ashlete Sisters and friends from across the globe.
The very first step for me was in my living room with a dvd player and borrowed DVDs (which I have since lent out and they have come back and been lent out again multiple times). The DVDs were from the 21 day fix program, filled with positive motivation, compound whole body exercises using small dumbbell weights with focus on getting through the workout one minute at a time.
I will be very honest about this part of the process.
It was NOT pretty.
It HURT to get up and down off of the floor.
I felt BAD about myself.
I got MAD that I had let myself go. I used to be an athlete.
And I beat myself up on an almost daily basis in the very beginning.
BUT – in order to start – all I had to do was wake up 30 minutes earlier than normal. My sister kept bugging me. It was only 30 minutes. I had excuses and she had answers.
I had to convince myself that I had time.
I already took a shower before work. I already had the morning rush. So … if all I had to do to workout was get up 30 minutes earlier, go down some stairs and push a power button, I had to keep reminding myself, I had no excuse.
No more excuses
They say it takes 21 days to build a habit.
So, I set off for 21 days being my goal. Day after day, I would get up, do the DVD and then get ready for work. I followed what my sister (an avid beachbody coach at the time) encouraged me to … so, I downloaded a few fun graphic apps for my iPhone, worked on motivational sayings and took photos. I used the graphic apps, shared on Instagram and Facebook. I logged my progress. I posted a zillion positive affirmations to my social media. I reminded myself over and over that I could do this. I did not give up.
Slowly, I stopped beating myself up, and I started being proud.
First, I was proud when I could complete a set.
Then, I became more proud when I could use … then increase … the weight I was lifting.
Then even more proud when I saw comparison photos.
Supplementary to these 30 minute exercise DVDs was simply going outside for a walk.
I had two fat pugs and I decided for their health, and mine, we would walk.
At first, all my knees would handle would be around the block (maybe 400 meters?). But by this point … I wouldn’t let knee pain stop me (stubborn much?!?).
Then, I slowly built to a half mile, then a mile, then three. I would walk NO MATTER WHAT after dinner at night. Rain (put on a rain coat and go – and we even got the pugs raincoats). Darkness (put on a headlamp and a taser in your pocket). Exhausted (it’s only a few minutes out of your day and you owe it to yourself to do this before bed). Busy (when are you not busy?). Mom duties (Really? There’s a track where they practice soccer. You can walk round and round and round the soccer field the whole 90 minutes she’s at soccer listening to podcasts about science so that you’re ready for your next exam).
The walks turned into jogs. Then my daughter Lizzy decided that it was her time to be in charge of my “training” and that we were going to do a race. So, we signed up for a 10k. And we trained for it. And we finished it.
The next phase: thanks to one of my BFFs, I discovered Ashley Horner and started my home gym.
To be continued …