How I trick Myself Into Working Out
Was it the fact I was closing in on 40? The dysfunctional thyroid I didn’t know about? The pregnancy where I could barely eat and yet somehow gained 35 lbs? Was it my husband who loves me unconditionally, and would tell me “I looked fine” and hand me yet another taco?
I’m fairly confident that all the above factors played a roll, but just to tip the scale in favor of major weight gain, I also stopped working out a few years ago. (I’m pretty sure that was the thyroid no longer working - I had become so incredibly demotivated and fatigued for what seemed like no reason - oh and my appetite went waaaay up).
I FINALLY got on top of the hypothyroidism and feel like a million dollars. My appetite is back under control, my mood has improved, and I have so much more energy! (Seriously, get a check up done before making a get-into-shape-plan. You might be surprised at what simple blood work might uncover).
Now the hard work of getting back into exercise can begin. And, oh yes, I really need it. I present you with a dramatization of Thursday’s events:
For a minute I was in abject terror that I’d lost my daughter. The neighbor I was was with (who Could see her) thought I had lost my mind as I continued to shriek “WHERE’s the baby?!!”
Sigh. No, not lost. Just in a blind spot. Under my BUTT.
So it’s time to bust this booty and get in shape!!
As it’s been a while so I’ve had to really draw on my inner motivation to get out the door. As such I’m whipping out my old list of tricks - a formula for the escape velocity needed to break free of the couch’s gravitational pull. Here they are:
1.Mind Games: Instead of saying I have to work out i say I “get” to work out, but this only works if I think it with actual enthusiasm. This can take practice as it often sounds like total sarcasm. (I get to work out. Yay.) All kidding aside, this actually does work at times. And you can get creative. As long as it “sounds” enthusiastic when you say it to yourself in your head. You can go the Ralph Wiggums route (Yay! I’ll pretend i’m a rocket!), or Inigo Montoya: (Hello fat, my name is Allegra. You killed my favorite pants. Prepare to die) or just go plain bad-ass and chanel Samuel L Jackson: (“and you will know my name is the lord, when i lay my vengeance upon thee!!!” *I’m looking at YOU, cankles)!
2. Use Psychology: Ask yourself “What could I keep doing right now to keep feeling crappy?” Don’t ask my why this works, but it does. Asking myself what I could do right now to feel good just doesn’t have the same conscious-shifting power. Also “good” is complicated. Sitting on my booty watching Santa Clarita Diet feels good in a way (love you Drew!), but also kind of…not good. Being overly sedentary starts effecting my quality of happiness because I know I’m mortgaging future good health.
*When my husband’s Grandma was in the hospital a few years back for surgery her doctor’s told her that for every day she was in bed she’d have to do another hour of physio-therapy. This really put things into perspective for me about my love affair with the sofa.
The point is, when I ask myself what I could I keep doing to keep feeling crappy and I can only answer “by continuing to sit here, dodging salads and feeling my skin slowly graft to the couch” I suddenly find i don’t want to keep doing it.
3.Change My focus: I can’t motivate myself to work out to look good. First, i’ve never felt good enough, fit enough (Anything enough) even when I was 70 lbs lighter and my skin was firmer. And though i know i’ll look a little better if i lose weight by society’s standards, it’s not going to get me out the door. This is because I know my appearance won’t have changed (size-wise) by the time I’m done, and it won’t for a long time. So I try to focus on what WILL change:
My skin will look healthier
My head will feel clearer
I’ll get to see how my neighborhood is doing (this is especially interesting since Hurricane Michael).
I’ll get out of the little boxy-cave that my home becomes when I never leave it.
I’ll get some Vitamin D.
I’ll be able to sit around all I want for the rest of the day without guilt.
I’ll be able to mentally get on with other tasks of the day because I did the thing.
I’ll have peace of mind that my muscles are getting strengthened which will help me prevent all the many injuries I now get in my poor ankles and feet from supporting all this weight.