Post # 1
Background: last summer I decided that my weight was too high. Technically I was in the top end of “healthy weight” but my jeans were tight and I was unhappy. I decided to start exercising – cardio mainly. I started off doing 15 minutes 4-5 times a week. This soon became 20 minutes 4-5 times a week. For the last three to four months, it’s been 5-6 times a week of 30 minutes. I’m talking hard cardio here – I literally am drenched with sweat at the end of the 30 minutes.
This, combined with just eating better (cutting out junk food – 3 meals a day, usually oatmeal for breakfast, a large sandwich for lunch, decent dinner and mainly fruit for snacks, averaging 1500-1700 calories per day), meant that I lost 20lb, which isn’t a huge amount but I look and feel a ton better. I really enjoy the exercising most of the time and I love the food I’m eating. I don’t restrict myself if I’m out socialising, either – I eat and drink what I want if I’m out with friends.
But now, I feel great…except that I feel guilty if I “skip” a day of exercise. Like today – feeling headachey and my ankle is a bit sore, so I didn’t exercise when I should have. The last time I had a “day off” was Thursday as I simply didn’t have the time (didn’t get home until 11pm), but I exercised the last three days.
How do I get over this? I don’t want to be obsessive about getting the workouts in, but equally I do want to keep up a high level (5 times a week of 30 minutes would be ideal). But right now, all I can think is that I’m lazy, going to gain all the weight back etc. – all because I missed one workout session!
Anyone been in a similar situation?
Post # 3
I felt like that for a long time after I lost a bit of weight (around 30 lbs) – think it just comes with the turf. I’ve gotten a lot better since I had to rest because I had 2 surgeries on my knee last year. even when I was unable to train like I wanted to, I still kept up with the healthy eating for the most part and managed to keep all the weight off.
seeing that I could do it without my insane exercise schedule really helped me and now I’m much better at taking rest days since I know the importance of listening to my body and keeping myself injury free.
right now I’m training for an ironman triathlon and knowing that the $500 entry fee is non refundable is really driving the point home.. 😉 are you interested in any sort of races? (bike, running, etc) maybe signing up for one and following a regimented training plan (which includes rest days) might help.
Post # 4
The important thing is to not completely fall off the bandwagon. I never really understood this attitude, but Darling Husband does it sometimes and I know a LOT of women fall prey to it: You skip working out for a day or two, or you eat something unhealthy like pizza for lunch, and next thing you know, you’ve declared it a “fat day” or a “fat week” and all other healthy habits are out the window.
I find that if I’ve got ‘the guilt’ for not working out, I make myself feel better by eating exceptionally healthy that day — like, stick to light salad with red wine vinegar for dressing and a grilled chicken breast. And maybe I’ll do a couple sets of pushups just to feel like I did SOMETHING, anything at all. Between those two things, all guilt is gone and I feel like I’m still on the skinny-girl wagon!
Post # 5
@Spideykiss: I think you’re just scared that you’ll fall off the bandwagon completely, and that one missed workout will lead to another, etc.
I think this actually might not be a bad mentality to have. You’re holding yourself accountable.
You could always try to squeeze in a mini workout when you’re having one of those busy days. It takes less than 5 minutes to do 3 sets of 15 squats or lunges. Heck, sometimes I do those in the washroom at work when no one else is in there lol. Little things all add up, right? Then you don’t have to feel completely useless.
Post # 6
@jenangeles: Thanks for the tips. Unfortunately I am scarred for life by high school gym class and cannot face working out with others, or any kind of competition. I work out alone, in my own home. Even joining a gym terrifies me 🙁
@iarebridezilla: I think that’s exactly it – in the past I’ve messed up one day, so I’ve though, screw it, and given up that day…that weekend…and that week…Once I stop, that’s it! I’m scared that will happen each time I don’t work out, but I can’t work out 365 days a year. I’d like to stick to a committed 30 minutes 5 x weekly but I feel guilty about those two days a week off (but at the same time, I know my body needs rest).
@canarydiamond: I love the positive spin you put on my fairly obsessive behaviour – it is definitely keeping me going!
Post # 7
Ultimately there has to be a balance. While I agree it’s not good to let yourself fall back in to old habits, complusive exercising can become a real problem – I have a friend who struggles with it and it’s seriously painful for me to watch. It doesn’t sound like this is a problem for you yet, but I would keep an eye on the guilt. When you lose that much weight, it’s easy to get sucked in to the idea that your self-worth is based around your weight and you’re being “bad” if you don’t stick to your diet or exercise “as much as you should”. Healthy habits are good, but not if the only end goal is to be skinny. Again, NOT saying that this is the case for you, but just something to be mindful of. Try to remember that the number on the scale doesn’t change who you are as a person 🙂
Congrats on the weight loss though – it sounds like you did it in a very healthy way and that’s something to be applauded!
Post # 8
My advice- schedule set rest/recovery days for yourself. Your body needs them! I build them into my schedule, the same days each week. I always take Mondays and Fridays off. And think of them as “recovery” instead of “don’t feel like working out today.”
Post # 9
I have to agree with mrsjennibtobe1987
Post # 10
My post keeps getting eaten!! Anyway — the really short version. It can be really dangerous to have a compulsive relationship with exercise. Your goal should be to be HEALTHY, not SKINNY. These are not the same!! Remind yourself of this every day, if need be. It is HEALTHY, not bad, to take 1-2 days of rest of week. Your body will not fall apart — you are being good to it. (I have to remind myself this too — I tend to overdo everything.) You are also more likely long term to keep working out if you don’t think of it as all or nothing.
Post # 11
@bluegreenjean: You, and everyone else on this thread are right. I know I need to take a step back and see the big picture. I know that I need to make changes that are sustainable for the rest of my life, and working out daily isn’t. I like the idea of having set days of the week as “rest” days. Maybe writing them in at the start of each week will help.
(I did go and work out today, in the end….sigh)