Last week, I alluded to the fact that I don’t do workout/meal posts like I used to because I don’t really work out like I used to. I definitely don’t work out like I used to but I also haven’t gained weight and I don’t feel unhealthy. Today I wanted to share a bit more of how I went from being a cardio queen to…well…not.
All my excuses? Are just classic offenders.
Money — Moving in April was expensive and I decided to sacrifice my pricey Define membership so I could afford it. Even though I could make the sacrifice now, it’s kind of a drive, and I don’t feel like I want to make the commitment.
Motivation — Without my preferred way of working out (and without an expensive membership), my motivation plummeted.
Time — The two puppies started taking up a lot of my free time.
Shit happening — The month leading up to my infection, I felt miserable and in pain a lot and couldn’t work out even when I was motivated. Then there was the week spent with Eric in the hospital…and then my family arrived for two weeks. And I like going outside to workout, but it’s truly too hot outside. Blah blah blah.
Hair — I don’t feel like washing it. (See also “Time.”)
Part of the reason I wasn’t motivated is because I didn’t miss working out. The benefits I associate with working out, like energy, confidence, happiness, stress relief, and weight maintenance/loss were still extremely present in my life. Here is how I’ve been doing it.
Cooking and doing the dishes* — Eric and I grocery shop weekly and I cook a lot. Not only does this help me stay in shape because I’m eating healthier, but cooking? Isn’t exactly done sitting down. Neither are dishes. Some days when I’m in the kitchen, I feel like I’m in an aerobics class! Stir the pot, grab the salt, put it back, scrub that dish…now repeat three times a day! Work it!! Seriously, cooking from scratch is tiring! The days when I don’t cook are kind of like how I used to feel about rest days from working out. These days, I enjoy going out for dinner like I used to enjoy a day out of the gym; instead of being too tired to do more reps, I’m too tired to do more dishes.
Cleaning* — I like my space to look nice, and that means I’m not content to see smudges on my dining room table. (I don’t know why, but it gets the worst smudges and I have to clean it with Febreze wood cleaner daily. I do laundry throughout the week — the dog’s beds, the place mats, the sheets, my clothes — and vacuum.
Chasing the puppies* — Once I’m done cooking and cleaning and think about sitting down, then I realize I can’t…the puppies are up and at it! I don’t get to sit in one place for too long. Now that they are fully vaccinated and can go outside for walks (!!!) I get more down time in the apartment, but I’m making up for it taking them on walks throughout the day. In either case, I’m getting a lot of exercise from exercising them — and mainly from stalking them when they look like they are going to have accidents, cleaning up after them, vacuuming up the mess it makes when they start destroying their bed, feeding them, cleaning their crate, etc. Seriously, it’s great cardio.
(Side note: I used to get so pissed off when celebs say, “I just chase my kids to stay in shape!” Like, no, Kelly Ripa, I think we all know it takes more than that to make your fucking clavicle and ribcage stand out like it does, and you have a nanny and a housekeeper so you don’t really “chase” your kids…but I do think that actual child/animal-rearing might have some truth to it!)
Eating healthy — I’m finding it pretty easy these days to cook healthy foods and eat them and enjoy unhealthy foods without being ridiculous. Maybe it’s the lack of cardio, my general happiness, or my fixed schedule/routine…or maybe it’s just getting older and changing my relationship with food. I could probably expand on this a lot more, but for now, the short fact is this: I’m not having trouble eating what I enjoy and fitting into my jeans.
Hormones — Going off the Pill and getting an IUD knocked a few pounds off my “relatively easy to maintain” weight.
All of the above means I feel in shape and look healthy and fit. Still, I enjoy working out…on occasion. All I do is strength train though (via Core Fusion/YogaVibes or the occasional class at Define); cardio is just a waste of time for me when I feel so active (and so exhausted at the end of the day!) and I really don’t feel like washing my hair a lot. I know that will change as the weather gets cooler and the puppies get older, but right now, I just don’t care.
And I don’t care that I don’t care! At first, I kinda felt lazy about the fact that my sneakers were gathering dust, but then I realized…Wow, it’s really nice to get to a point when you get your ass moving enough in your daily life that you don’t have to go to a gym to get your heart rate up! And I like that there are more important things in life to me right now than losing five pounds or taking lots of new classes. (Though I can’t say that will always be the case!)
So for now, when I talk about “working out,” I’m really just talking about the above!
*It may be clear at this point that I do a lot of housework and it may seem like I shouldn’t be spending so much time on it because I should have a willing partner to help share the work. My partner is…semi-willing. He’s content to live in a messier house than I am, but he will do whatever I ask (begrudgingly). But the thing is, even if he does more cooking/cleaning/puppying, that means I’ll just spend that free time…working out. And faced with those two options, I’d rather just do the housework because it doesn’t mess up my hair.