Lifestyle Month: on Exercising

Every year, it`s an intention, and every year, it is a struggle.

In summer, I don`t need the gym – I walk everywhere and enjoy running at the beach. Winter however is a different matter. I don`t like to be outside, but soon, both body and soul are missing the activity. Gym should be calling my name – but I just don`t want to go.

When I reduced my working hours, I vowed to go finally re-establish a regular gym routine and wrote down a list of the most compelling reasons why I should get over myself and just go, no matter what:

  1. I always feel good as soon as I enter the gym. As soon as my body is in there, my mindset will follow suit. And I feel amazing afterwards!
  2. I set myself a goal of 30 mins (for the beginning). That`s not much, but it`s more than nothing, and a small step towards establishing a habit and being able to do more again eventually, as I get fitter.
  3. Every journey starts with a small step. The first visit is always the one I`m most likely to postpone over and over again. The second (and third, etc) visit however will never be as difficult again, as once I started something I want to keep it going. So just go!
  4. Too busy? 30 minutes of gym will cost me about an hour including travelling, getting changed and shower. What else would I do with these 60 minutes? Probably mainly berating myself for not going to the gym.
  5. The time and effort is an investment into my health and wellbeing, for now and for the far away future. I remember what it felt like to be overweight, and I can only imagine what it will be like to get the first ailments of old age and knowing that I could have held them off for a few years if only I had taken the time to exercise more when I was still able to. Remember the benefits of exercise go beyond weight loss.
  6. Being happy with my body and going to the gym regularly feels great and nourishes a positive mindset and self esteem that spread to other areas of my life: nutrition, general activity levels, alcohol and how I dress and care for myself in general.  Not going to the gym affects the same things, in the opposite way.
  7. Money – I pay the same fee for my membership, regardless of how often I go. One visit can cost me anything between £1.20 and £40.00 – choice is mine.
  8. Exercise releases endorphines and enhances my sense of self worth and confidence, which makes me happier (and easier to be with) altogether.

Even though, it lasted about 3 weeks. Finally, I acknowledged that I simply dislike it – and cancelled my membership. And the guilt (point 7 above!) fell off as soon as I handed in the letter!

I now exercise at home. I already had a treadmill, and I also bought myself a mat and a kettlebell. Now, a 30 min session isn`t difficult to fit in at all – no travelling,, my own bathroom, and then straight into my comfies. My own music. I often preper dinner before I go, so it`ll be ready for me coming out. So far, this seems to work for me.

I really think you have to enjoy exercising in order to stick with it, and if you don`t, you`ll have to go and find something else, until you discovered the activity you`re actually looking forward to.

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13 thoughts on “Lifestyle Month: on Exercising

  1. twinkletoes says:

    1. I have too much fat and not enough muscle.
    2. I am slightl overweight, although it’s so borderline that it’s debatable depending whose BMI chart you choose to read or, in fact, whether you give any credence to BMI at all.

    3. Thinking of money helps me, too. My gym membership is £38 (the cheapest gym around).

    4. I’ve splashed out on a personal trainer, because I did that once before: booked a PT for 3 months, kept going to the gym 3x/week for 2 years after. Seems to work for me.

    You may have noticed that I didn’t say that it makes me feel good. It doesn’t, particularly. I have never liked the gym and probably never will. If I feel good on leaving (most certainly NEVER on entering), then that’s because I’m off the hook for another two or three days.

    When my employer used to sponsor my gym membership, I could afford nicer gyms. It’s only now that I appreciate the difference. I thought a gym is a gym, but while my cheapo gym is well equipped, the building is quite run down (fair enough) and it’s dirty! It’s the latter that I really struggle with. Granted, this morning I saw someone clean the handles and screens of the cross trainers, but down near floor level the machines are covered in hair, dust and sweat and it’s gross. I’ve only used the shower and changing room once, because it wasn’t clean. No thanks, I prefer to shower at home.

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    • culbia says:

      Dirty pools and gyms – we, too, had this problem for a while. This was after a particular employee left, and after observing the matter over a couple of weeks, I raised the moist, black grime around the metal poles that hold the cubicle walls, which was fast approaching 0.5cm height. It was gone when I next came in, and I`m yet to see it again.

      It`s still not perfect, but the really plush gyms are much to expensive – I don`t go often enough and would actually go less as they are further away. Mine is only about a mile from my house, which should be even more of a reason to go!

      Keep thinking about whether or not a PT would be a worthwhile investment, but still cannot bring myself. I went for a while while they had a special offer, but they are now charging £ 35.00 for a session again. I`ll keep my eyes peeled for the New Years` special, though, as definitely interested in principle!

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  2. Lilith says:

    Gym? Nix für mich. Vor der Arbeit hab ich keine Zeit, nach der Arbeit bin ich k.o., am WE mag ich das Haus nicht gerne verlassen, ich finds auch öde in Gyms zu trainieren. Ich fahre täglich eine halbe Stunde mit dem Rad, Sommers wie Winters, regnet es mal zu stark, oder es hat geschneit, oder wir haben Glatteis, gehe ich eine 3/4 Stunde zu Fuß zur Arbeit (sehr strammer Schritt!), ich nehme jede Treppe und meide Aufzüge und Rolltreppen, ich lebe in der 3. Etage (mit Aufzug), laufe die Treppen aber mehrfach am Tag rauf und runter, ich finde daher, dass ich Bewegung genug habe. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

      • Lilith says:

        Ja, ne?! 🙂

        Du, ich hab gestern versucht, Mandelmus zu machen. Hat nicht geklappt. Ich glaube fast, mein doofer Mixer war nicht stark genug, der hat es nicht geschafft, die Mandeln in Mus zu verarbeiten, es blieb krümelig, wie ganz fein gerieben Mandeln. Menno.

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    • culbia says:

      Das klingt ungefahr nach dem Lebensstil den ich in der warmen Jahreszeit pflege – da vermisse ich das Fitnesstudio auch nicht. Im Winter, wenn es kalt und windig ist, igel ich mich jedoch lieber zuhause ein, da mag ich nur dann vor die Tuer wenn ich unbedingt muss.

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  3. Vic @ Dad is Cheap says:

    My dad’s family have had heart conditions around the age of 50. I’m 35 now, so I’m doing my best to be as healthy as possible now. It’s just so hard when good food is always so bad for you 🙂

    I find the best time to work out is to get it out of the way the first thing in the morning. That way no matter what you do the rest of the day at least you got exercise out of the way first.

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    • culbia says:

      In the morning??? Not a chance! I tried, honestly. I just can`t. Even if I make myself I don`t perform. (If I have all day, I naturally want to go in the afternoon, between 2 and 4, maybe…)

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  4. Howto$tuffYourPig says:

    I used to routinely go to a gym, but it can be hard to motivate yourself living in the dark and dreary New England weather so we decided to set up a home gym. It’s nice to be able to work out on my own time in the comfort of my own home. Excellent post!

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    • culbia says:

      That`s a fab idea. I bought a treadmill for the same reason, cancelled my gym membership and finally lost the excess weight that I was carrying. A couple of years ago I started gym again so I can use different equipment (no space for home gym) and sauna, but I really don`t go enough, and I`m painfully aware of it. Never mind the fees, I`m fine with it in the warm season (I`m in Scotland, so ours is probably as short as yours!) as I`m active enough, but winter… is a different matter…

      Liked by 1 person

  5. bloomwellnessblog says:

    I’m so all about exercise on the go or at home. I’ve worked in fitness for almost 20 years now an NEVER I repeat NEVER had a gym membership…shocking, right? Nah, its just easier at home! Love his post – its normal and very, very real 🙂

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    • culbia says:

      Aw, thank you, that`s a lovely comment 🙂

      For quite a while, gym worked, but it was just no longer. And having a treadmill *and* a gym membership really is one too much… It`s so easy at home – you change, excercise, have your shower and then straight into your comfies and have dinner. Part of the issue was also that my gym has really gone downhill (cleanliness!!!) – I just no longer enjoyed going…

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