Thursday, July 2, 2015

The Best of Intentions

As you can see, this lovely quote is via Horseshoes & Hand Grenades.

As the school year wore on from May into June, it rapidly became apparent that I wasn't even remotely taking care of myself. My apartment was a mess, I was eating a lot of Little Caesar's, and I generally felt sluggish. I could see that my bad habits were feeding into each other, but I was in full-blown survival mode, so I was in no place to begin to fix them. I resolved to make my summer about putting healthy, functional systems into place.

I decided to start with working out, something I have never routinely done in my adult life. I found a six-day "reboot" kind of plan, and a longer couch-to-5K plan. I decided that I would start with the six days of circuit training to boost motivation (let's be real--a month-long challenge won't happen without some wind in my sails) and then I would start the 5K training. I bought some special, extra-super-stabilizing (and expensive!) running shoes. I wrote all of my workouts from now until my October 5K in my planner. I even did the six days of circuit training, which is HUGE for me! I was sore as hell, but I did the best that I could. I was proud. I was cruising into the 5K training on a high, just as I had hoped I would.

And then, on day 2 of couch-to-5K, I hurt myself. I wasn't running or cross-training. I was doing a little housework, and I twisted and bent at the waist to pick something up. This motion was just right to thoroughly piss off a muscle that apparently didn't particularly enjoy circuit training. It was like a pain explosion from my lower back to my hip. I couldn't put weight on the leg. I barely managed to grab my phone and get onto the couch. (There was a lot of cussing and crying.)

Fantastically painful muscle spasms were a new one, but this sort of thing is why working out has never taken hold with me in the past. I always seem to have some success, quickly followed by some sort of injury. Since I have more than a touch of perfectionism, I tend to want to do things either exactly as planned or not at all. In the past, being sidelined by an injury was always an excuse to give up--obviously I can't do this exactly as I had envisioned, so why bother? I have a heart condition and extra bones. (Seriously!) I'm just not meant to be an athlete of any kind.

Running shoooooooooooes fit for a lioness.

However, something about this time is different. Maybe I've mellowed out since entering my 30's. Maybe it's that I have a phenomenally supportive boyfriend who has had similar back problems and won't let me use it as a cop-out. Maybe it's a combination of things. But tomorrow I think I will lace up those expensive running shoes and... go for a walk.

Have you ever had a similar experience? Or a time when a minor (or major) setback made you want to give up? What do you do to keep your best-laid plans from going awry?


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