I mentioned in a prior post that I have a new lease on life. I have made some major changes in the past year - including eating healthier, working out, finding a better work/life balance.
Last August I started to work out with a personal trainer twice a week. Who knew I would love working out and going to the gym after way too many years of laziness. I've researched this before and never took the chance - maybe because of the cost - maybe because I didn't think I'd like it or stick with it. But in the 7 months of twice a week sessions I have only missed one week - and that was when our son was in the hospital. I hate to admit this but I have never stuck to an exercise program for this long. It has amazed me how much I love my sessions. I go to what I would call a small boutique gym geared for people 50+. There is never more than 3 people there at a time. And my trainer works really well with my knee issues. He can change things up on the fly if something really is bothering my knees. When I first started going they do a pre-screening - asking what your goals are. And while they know most people want to lose weight my biggest goals were to be healthier and to feel strong again. As I have gotten older I feel like I had lost my strength.
This has been something that has really changed me - and not just by helping with weight loss. I have done things that have surprised me in so many ways. First, I have stuck to it religiously for 7 months. That is a first for me. I tend to be gung-ho about something in the beginning and then start to make excuses. Second, I am doing things I never thought I could do - kettlebells, squats, TRX straps, weights - its been an amazing journey. I feel good about myself, am more confident (says my husband), feel stronger (which was one of my goals) and have lost weight and inches! Since starting this journey in August 2015 I have lost 35+ lbs and lots of inches. I regret not taking measurements at the beginning - and this is one of my goals this month. I still have about 35 lbs that I would like to lose but I find I am not as focused on the number on the scale as I have been in the past. I am focusing on how I feel. And on progress. Every day is a little bit closer to my goal.
The workouts are based on functional movement - things you do in everyday life that you struggle with as you get older- focusing on strength, balance, endurance, flexibility etc. . With my bad knees steps have been my nemesis. Today I literally ran up the steps at work - 3 flights - ahead of 3 young guys who were coming into our building to do some work. They were all huffing and puffing at the top - granted they were all smokers - but that made me feel amazing - and a little bit smug.
I've learned a lot about myself:
- I am stronger than I thought!
- I am way more adventurous than I have been since I was a 20-something.
- I absolutely love my workouts!
- I have seen a huge improvement in my arthritic knees. this may be because of weight loss so less pressure on my knees as well as the strengthening of the muscles around my knees which has helped to stabilize them. While they are still problematic they are so much better than before. Who knew I would ever be able to do squats!
- I really do feel better when I stay away from grains - and unfortunately this includes beer - which I love but does not love me.
- I am at my best when I plan ahead for meals.
- I have also learned that I am really good at sabotaging myself - especially when it comes to eating. I'll post about this another time.
While my progress in my weight loss has been slower than I would like (35+ lbs in 7 months) I am feeling so much better - healthier, stronger, more confident, happier. I know that I am doing things right - not dieting - but trying to develop healthy eating habits that will last me a lifetime. My blood pressure and cholesterol numbers are really great, my arthritic knees and achy joints don't hurt as much. I just feel like a whole new person. I love dressing a bit differently with this slightly smaller body. I've taken the plunge to stop fighting my curly hair - letting it grow a bit into a curly bob. (this was one of my goals last summer) I even have my husband eating differently. Last year he never would have eaten spaghetti squash or delicata squash - but he is really making an effort to try new things - this from a meat and potatoes and pasta kind of guy. And his BP and cholesterol are numbers are better as well. We are getting up at 5 am M-F and doing yoga 2 mornings and walking the other 3. He has been so supportive of all of my changes and is my biggest cheerleader.
Life is good!