It’s summertime and I haven’t yet found my bikini body. I have such good intentions to get my routine started in the spring, but something is always coming up. I am guilty of overthinking. For example, the other day, I planned a two mile run at the park, while Allie had swim practice. That would be amazing, right? A few minutes before it was time to go, I began torturing myself. It’s too hot. My legs hurt. I’m tired. I need time to myself.
Gah. So much complaining. I annoy myself with all of it. Instead of complaining, I went through the motions, as if I wanted to go. Once I put on my running shoes, there was no turning back! You know what happened? I thoroughly enjoyed it! I am completely out of shape, but who the hell cares? I got out there, in the heat and I even lived to tell the tale! Who knew?
I find it difficult to get started with an exercise routine. I never want to do it, HOWEVER, I ALWAYS am glad that I did it! The only way to get back into shape is to take baby steps. Running, jogging, walking, swimming, whatever! It’s the fact that I get out there and try that counts!
I am discovering that the best way to get over my fear is to prepare in advance for that fear. What am I fearful of anyway? I know I am not going to be running 8 minute miles. So what?! I’ll walk for 5 minutes and run for 5 minutes. If I get tired, it’s no big deal if I stop and walk.
It’s funny. I get myself so spun up with anxiety and all I have to do, is walk through it. It’s amazing what a little music and a little courage can do for your motivation! Once my workout was completed and it was time to pick Allie up from swim practice, I actually felt like I could have extended my workout even longer. HA!
Which brings me to my next workout topic. I started swimming a while back. When I was a kid, I used to swim all the time. I loved swimming! Any opportunity to swim, I would be there! I was once a good swimmer. Then, I grew up and laying out at the pool, sunning myself was much more important than splashing around in the pool. A few years ago, I blindly signed up for a triathlon. I had the running part down. Riding a bike, you never forget how to do. For sure, I didn’t have any problems swimming—I was a good swimmer when I was young.
Oh! How wrong I was!
With the triathlon, I had also signed up for training with a team. I went to the bike clinic and learned so much about cycling and how to cycle in a triathlon. Then, there was the swim clinic. I went with complete (over) confidence and a little excitement. I had to be at the pool by 7:00 a.m. The air and the water was quite brisk, but I was not concerned. How hard could it be? The coach was a professional swimmer that held numerous world records in her home country of New Zealand. She had completed a number of Iron Man competitions. She really knew her stuff! She came out and gave us instructions for the warm up and soon after, the wheels fell off the bus.
The lesson was on the freestyle swim stroke. Easy, peasy? Or not. We were broken up into teams after 30 minutes of the instructor breaking the stroke into its most basic parts. Only, I couldn’t figure out how to put all those parts and pieces together. I learned rather quickly that what stroke I had performing for 30-some years, in no way resembled swimming and most certainly not freestyle!
At first, the instructor was giving me individual attention and trying to help me out. I was so out of synch with the stroke. I could tell she was really wanted to help, yet there was 8 other people in the pool that needed some attention. I became increasingly more self-conscious. My face was burning and I was getting flustered—as was the coach! In the end, she pulled me aside and offered to give me a private lesson at a later date (which I was far too embarrassed to schedule) and moved on with the clinic. It was a disaster!
Since that time, I’ve practiced a lot and enlisted the help of Mr. Bear. Not only did he swim and play water polo in high school, he’s been a surfer for as long as I’ve known him. When I told him about my experience at the pool, he politely told me that he’d noticed that my swim stroke was a little off. With that, he gave me some pointers here and there. Alas, my freestyle has improved! I can even do a flip turn! Woohoo!
All of this to say, I have no excuses for not getting some exercise. Whether it’s the pool, or it’s running, I can get my exercise on and I don’t have to stress out about it. Today, I’m going to get my exercise and not worry about how fast or slow I run. I’m not going to worry about my swim technique. I’m just going to get out there, because that’s where I need to be today!