Why Workout?

Happy Saturday everyone! I just got in from my Running Club interval run.  Only about 6 of the 70 plus people in the Walk to Run program showed up this morning- GO US!  I actually did two intervals of walk 3/run 5 and then just ran the rest of the way.  For me, running 5 minutes and them stopping is like a tease for my body, because just as its feeling warmed up and ready to go, I stop and walk!  I am LOVING running a lot.  My next race is Memorial Day weekend and it is a 5 mile-r.  I know that I can do, and I can’t wait to get back that post-race “high” that I got on Mother’s Day!

When I think about the reason why I workout now, compared to the reasons I began working out, I notice a pretty big difference. When I first worked out I wanted to be “skinny” and “toned”, but now I do it because it relieves my stress, gives me more energy, makes me feel more confident, makes me aware of my body and what I put into it.  Yes it is nice to wear a smaller size and feel less “jiggly” all around, but it is the higher sense of self-worth and confidence that keeps me getting to the gym and going out for runs.  That is why people should not say “You’re so thin, you don’t even need to work out!”, because working out does WAY more than make you skinny!  And besides, everyone, including thin people, need to exercise!

I think back to elementary school and to the most athletic kids on the playground. These were the kids who were first in line at Field Day to participate in any relay race.  I would panic knowing I would have to run in the relay race.  They were the first to be picked for kickball teams, I prayed to be picked somewhere in the middle instead of the end. They were confident, outgoing, competitive, and having fun.  I was the exact opposite.  I was shy, not the most athletic kid (I did play softball and cheerleading but I wasn’t the best at either), and embarrassed to have to do anything in front of those other kids.

I had such a different feeling that first night at Running Club than I did back in elementary school. I felt nervous because it was new and different, but I was confident.  In my “elementary school mind-set” I would have been worried about how others would perceive me.  That first Tuesday though I didn’t care what anyone else was going to say about how fast/slow I ran, or if I was going to be the first/last person to finish.  I know I am by no means the most fit person in the planet, but exercising has put me in a really great spot mentally and physically!

Why do you workout?  What keeps you going back for more?  How have your fitness goals changed from then to now?

Yesterday was a crazy day, starting at 4:00, when I woke up to gym-it.  I was feeling pretty sleepy from the second I woke up.  Breakfast before the gym was a half serving of Apple Pie Oatmeal (I ate the other half for lunch with some yogurt!).  I also grabbed and iced coffee on my way to school.

Lucky for me, the specialists in my building provided the monthly breakfast yesterday morning.  I had a HUGE bowl (or two) of fruit salad.  It had honey-dew melon, cantaloupe, strawberries, grapes, and pineapples.  I never like honey-dew melon or cantaloupe but yesterday I decided that now I do.  So that is two more fruits I can start eating this summer!  Yum!

I also had an everything bagel with plain cream cheese.  I don’t usually eat bagels for breakfast unless it is with my school’s monthly breakfast, so I consider it my monthly treat.  The bagel was from Panera and it was very soft and fresh.  Breakfast really is the best way to start the day!

After school I stopped for a quick chapter at Book Club with some coworkers.  I had originally wanted to run but 1) the sun didn’t come out until 3 so I had already convinced myself that I didn’t have to run in gloomy weather and 2) I wasn’t feeling 100%.  I checked in with my body, and it told me to take the day, so I listened.

For dinner I headed to my friend Maureen’s house for a new recipe she wanted to try.  I had a glass of wine and several handfuls of flaxseed chips and Trader Joe’s salsa.


Her culinary masterpiece was Mongolian Beef, similar to a dish you can get at P.F. Changs.  It was garlic, ginger and beef sautéed with a sauce made of brown sugar and soy sauce.  She served it over brown rice topped with scallions.  It was very tasty!  The brown sugar gave the sauce an interesting sweetness and the garlic and ginger made the apartment smell like a chinese restaurant, mmmm.

Today I am going to my cousins’ birthday party.  They are 7 and 9 (9! OMG I am getting old!)  I am excited to sit in the sun and enjoy some good food and tasty beverages with my fam!

What are your plans for the weekend?

Whatever you do, I hope you enjoy it!

~L

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