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Fitfluencing. My fitness journey (the short story) and 7 tips on how to be fit.

Posted Dec 01 2011 10:33am
I have been actiive for many years.  Growing up we were very involved on the day to day operations of the ranch especially during summer breaks.  Being in shape or my weight was never an issue for me until I went to college.  My freshmen year I gained weight, lost it in the summer working on the ranch then gained it right back my sophomore year despite my resolve not to.  I tried some crazy diets like saltines, tea, and honey and I even tried Dexatrim.  Shockingly I couldn't stick with them and the weight continued to creep up.


I did not like the way my clothes felt, I hated the way I felt.  Finally the summer before my junior year of college I got smart and joined a gym. I started reading every health and fitness magazine I could get my hands on.  I started running more, lifting weights, and doing kickboxing classes.  On top of that I cleaned up my eating habits.  The weight came off slowly but surely.  I stayed active for the next 7 years by going to the gym, hiking, and running.  I loved my body.  I loved the muscle definition I loved how good I felt and yes I looked good in my clothes.

Then I got married, and pregnant, had a baby, moved out of town, dropped my gym membership and found myself looking for new ways to work out at home while learning how to juggle being  a Mom and a wife and work.  It took a little while but I found what worked for me.

1. Make yourself a priority.  

You have to be able to take care of yourself if you want to take care of your family.  I believe that I am a better mother because I take care of  myself and it sets a positive example for my kids. If you aren't doing this for you, you aren't as likely to stick with it either. I can;t stress this enough.  If you want to be fit and in shape you have to make yourself a priority.

2. Find what works for you.  

I started by using my ellitpical while the baby was napping and doing a few moves with my free weights.  When I got a jogging stroller I started taking my workouts outside more when the weather was agreeable.  Luckily I also have a lot of family around happy to watch the kids for me while I run. 

3. Don't do fad "diets".  
Make lifestyle changes.  Cut out sugary drinks, drink water instead.  Don't like it plain? Flavor it! Eat more fruit and veggies. Watch portion sizes.  You don't have to deprive yourself of the things you enjoy or eventually you may just freak out and eat the whole cake instead of one piece. 

4. Use the internet!  
There are so many online resources.  I started getting bored with my routine a year ago and wanted a boost through the winter.  I discovered and a whole new love for working out. You have to find what works for you, if you are going to stick with it. Don't be afraid to try new things!

5. Log your workouts.  
This makes it easy to track your progress and see that you are improving.  It helps keep me motivated. I love looking back through my notebook even for ideas on what to do today.  Sometimes I mix old workout together. 

6. Find support! 
It is so much easier to get your butt off the couch when you know someone is going to hold you accountable. Friends not supportive? Find some who are!  Use the internet to connect with others.

7. Use the 5 minute rule.
Put on your workout clothes and tell yourself all you have to do it 5 minutes.  Usually once you get started, you don't want to quit. My motto when I am feeling lazy is "I have never done a workout I have regretted, but I have regretted all the workouts I have skipped"

 This is a picture of me from last May after spending the winter doing nothing but bodyweight exercises, running and using the elliptical.  You can work out at home for cheap, four times a week and look good and feel good.  I went on to run a PR in a 5 mile race after this picture. 
What tips would you give to a newbie?
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