Thursday, February 5, 2009


I have a confession to make. I detest exercising. I am not one of those people who jump out of bed every morning eager to take a run (you know who you are) nor am I one of those people who get psyched up as I head to the gym.

I can not think of a single period in my life when I actually liked exercise. And I don't have one athletic bone in my body. As a child, I was the kid who got picked last for the kickball team. I hated PE. And in my one feeble attempt to be athletic, playing softball, I failed miserably (what was I thinking?).

When I was in college, I certainly didn't think anything about exercise. Well, there was the one semester I thought about taking up running and tried it for about a week but decided it was much more fun to participate in other activities.

And as an adult, I have been fairly active -riding my bike, walking the dog, playing with the kids. All those things could technically equate to exercise even though that isn't why I did them. Off and on over the years I would start exercising but it didn't take much for me to stop. A change in routine, a sickness (mine or one of the children's) or even a change in season. I always had an excuse. And once I got out of the routine it was so hard to get back into one.

But now that I am 40ish I know that if I don't take control of my life, it will only become harder. Diets have never really worked for me because my life is so hectic with three kids, it is hard to count calories or track everything I eat. So I knew that in order to shed these extra pounds and feel better, I was going to have to do two things: the first is change the way I eat and the second was to exercise.

The first step was to start eating healthier. Eliminating fast food, processed food and foods high in sugar. I have read many books on the subject but the best so far have been Joy's Life Diet and Small Changes, Big Results. Both books contain some excellent information on nutrition. I might also mention that The Abs Diet for Women and Sugarbusters also have some good nutrition information.

And as much as I hated it, the second step was to start some sort of exercise routine. For Christmas my mother gave our family the Wii Fit. It makes exercise seem more like a game yet it can be quite challenging. Beginning at the first of the year, I started using the Wii Fit for 30-40 minutes, 5 days a week. Now I have started incorporating some additional exercise in with the Wii Fit. My favorite DVD these days is the Sexy in Six series from Tracy Mallett. Although there are some intense exercises, I figure I can do anything for six minutes. And some days six minutes feel like an eternity. On nice days I also like walking or riding my bike. Anything to mix up the routine a little so that it doesn't monotonous.

It is still hard for me to make myself exercise. The truth is there are so many other things I would rather use my time for. But I have discovered that it's all about balance. And when my jeans feel a little loser or someone says "You've lost some weight" I know the effort is worth it.

I still allow myself to have some of the less healthy foods I love but only once and only on the weekend. The more weight I lose, the easier it is for me to say no to anything that isn't healthy for me. I guess it feels like I am taking a step backward every time I "cheat". So now that I am on my way to changing my life, I am hoping to make a positive impact on my family. I look forward to the day when I serve roasted cauliflower or fresh steamed green beans and my family all says "yum" rather then "yuck".

Oh, and I am also looking forward to the day when I can fit in my size 6 jeans again.