Monday, January 12, 2015

Join me in a January Fitness Challenge Group!

A post-workout "Sweaty Selfie"
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Back in November, I embarked on a bit of a fitness journey. After getting my latest bout of depression under control, I decided it was time for me to re-evaluate my priorities and work toward the more active lifestyle I used to enjoy. I got in touch with a friend of mine, who I knew to be a Beachbody Coach, to ask about a workout program that I'd heard about. I was full of skepticism for the "eating plan" and even more for the "magic shake" I'd be required to drink in order to participate in the 30 Day Fitness Challenge Group she'd told me about.

Let me back up a minute, actually.

I don't do diets. I don't do restrictive eating plans. My eating plan goes like this:

Step 1. Decide you want to eat something.
Step 2. Decide what you are going to eat.
Step 3. Make/acquire decided upon food.
Step 4. Eat the food.

I don't place value judgments on food or eating. I don't believe in "bad" foods or "good" foods. I believe that foods vary in their nutritional value, but I believe that there is nothing wrong with enjoying foods that are less nutritionally dense than, say, Kale. So my philosophy about food is that it is more than just fuel; that it should be enjoyed without guilt or shame.

I believe in health at every size. I don't believe that you have to lose weight in order to look or feel better about yourself. I believe that everyone deserves to enjoy movement and food in whatever body they are in. Every body is a good body, and every body deserves to be nurtured and cared for.

I wasn't so much doing that. I was lacking energy, I felt uncomfortable in my skin, and I wasn't moving my body enough. I wanted the support and accountability of the challenge group, so I went for it with the 21 Day Fix workout program, and yes, the Shakeology.

I was so pleased with the first challenge group that I wanted to do another one, and decided on PiYo for the December group.

I plan to review both of these work out programs more thoroughly, but for now, I want to share my experience thus far with the challenge groups.

I won't be sharing any before or after photos in this post (though I've got no shame with the sweaty selfies!). For one thing, full body shots in my underwear being on the internet is not compatible with my line of my work. For another, the physical changes so far are subtle. After 60 days of working out consistently, I lost about 5 pounds and about 15 total inches from various locations. The numbers themselves might not seem too impressive, though maybe more so when you account for the fact that these 60 days included Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's celebrations.

The thing is though? It's about so much more than the numbers. I've had a number of "Non-Scale Victories" that mean much more to me, and have a greater impact on my quality of life, than the numbers that indicate my relationship to gravity or the measurement of the space my body occupies. Things like increased energy, better sleep, more quality interaction with my children (actually having the energy to race them around the couch 20 times! involving them in my work outs! having more focus to concentrate on the outlandish story or silly song!), greater strength and flexibility (my yoga practice has been coming along nicely!), and even deeper connection in my marriage (my husband did the first challenge right along with me!). I had someone at work tell me that they were inspired by my new commitment to fitness to start working out again themselves!

I was able to get the support and accountability I needed to help re-establish exercise as a habit. I got to enjoy cheering others on as they worked toward their own health and fitness goals. We shared recipes, motivation, and daily sweaty selfies.

And so, I continue on in the Challenge Groups, and I invite you to join me! My next challenge group will start on January 19th, and the deadline to sign up is this Wednesday, January 14. There are a variety of workout programs available to meet the needs of everyone from beginner to athlete, and many workouts are 30 minutes per day or less!

If you think you might be interested, or want to learn more about challenge groups or otherwise meeting your health and fitness goals, please either message me on facebook or fill out the form below and I will contact you by e-mail!


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