What is it about exercise that is so freaking hard? First off, I wonder why my workout seemed to KILL me tonight, whereas the same workout was relieving yesterday. UGH! Why is exercise so much harder on a larger person, or a person out of shape?
I bet you want to say that it is physical, but I am here to tell you differently. I figured it out tonight. And most fitness trainers have figured it out too. They offer out of shape people “modifications” to the exercise. There is always an out of shape person in the back of the fitness movie that doesn’t kick as high, that doesn’t use weights, that doesn’t reach and stretch all the way to their toes.
I get it! Modification. Work in oxygen. Too much is not good. Fine! Even a very fit person has to push themselves physically while exercising…or they would not get anything out of it, either. Great. It is physically challenging for anyone in any shape.
That is not why it is so much harder for me. For me, it is completely emotional. I realized tonight that I went through a whole array of thoughts and emotions while I was working out. First, I felt tired, and I considered skipping a night. But I have done that before, and I know what happens then…I don’t do it the next day or the next. Not an option. Put on the big girl panties and just do it. So, at that point, I just wanted to get it over with.
Of course, once the oxygen starts flowing, so did my energy. I began to feel excited that I had just taken another step towards my goal. I know that if I can just start the workout, I know I will finish. I felt empowered.
Then, it started hurting. Not hurting bad, but hurting good. Then, hurting good turned into burning, and my legs began to quiver while we held a squatting pose, which set sail to a whole flurry of self doubt, shame, and sadness.
Pure sadness. I think to myself…I must look pitiful. I can’t do all of the exercises they are doing. I can’t do this every day for as long as it would take. I am never going to lose the weight I want to lose. I picture people in my head looking at me and nodding their heads at me in disgust…or worse, pity.
Then, the fitness instructor in the video has us in the runners stance doing the funky arm stretch thing. At that moment, my focus and thoughts go elsewhere. Gee, I think, I can feel my ab muscles and my back muscles. My arms stretched out long (as long as my short arms can stretch). I feel like I must look like a goddess in some crazy Greek statue pose. I feel like I have morphed into the person I am trying to become.
When we take our final cool down breaths, my head slowly rolls forward and I feel the muscles in the back of my neck sloooowwwllyyy stretch. It feels so GOOD! I am done.
The problem with this emotional roller coaster is that the next day, I don’t remember the thrill of when the ride is over. I mostly remember the terror of hanging upside down…
Overpower and overcome, right? I guess we will find out tomorrow.