But you don't look sick

When nothing about you is "normal"

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Just keep swimming! Just keep swimming!

I must say if you haven't seen Finding Nemo, you really need to. I can't even tell you how many times I've seen it!!! While there are many favorite quotes in this movie, "Just keep swimming!Just keep swimming! Just keep swimming!" tends to pop up more in my daily life than "this tentacle is shorter than the rest but you can't tell when I do this *insert swishing action, preferably with a a skirt with ribbons or some sort of gathering*

Motivation, or rather my ongoing challenge with it. Specifically with exercise. To be honest, I hate excersise. Nothing about going to the gym appeals to me at all. Not the sweaty guy beside me looking over to see what my treadmill settings are, not the buff guy behind me staring at butt, and really not the girl on the other side of me who looks like she's ready to go on a date (and smells like she has bathed in hawiian mist) I have always loved walking around, playing sports and generally having a good time. Reaping the benefits of exercise without thinking about it.
I really really hate this scent.

Part of my problem is that I have often pretended or tricked myself into believing that I am fine. Generally I like to think that I'm a decently fit person. As a society we have all been bombarded with images of the "ideal" female form. Toned and perfectly per portioned.influenced by this, I have often strived to have that " beach ready, bikini body" which according to Cosmo, we can all achieve in 6 weeks with these simple moves! I have tried many different exercise regimes in hopes to become stronger and more toned. These have ranged from swimming,biking, going to the gym with specific targets, buying a elliptical, yoga, joining a boot camp and p90x. The problem with all of these is that while I am capable of doing these, I always end up in more pain. I have spent years trying to figure out what my limits were, and never finding a solid awnser.

How would i know how much i could do before i cant walk the next day? Knowing that pain is a Normal part of exercise and that yes you are going to be sore, when do I draw the line at this is not "normal" pain? Why isnt there a light that goes off when I've reached that limit? Unfortunately it doesn't work that way. My limits change daily, I also have to consider how what I'm about to do may impact me the next day. If I have a particularly physical day the next day at work, maybe I shouldn't workout the day before, or make it shorter and less intense so I am not too sore the next day to complete the tasks at hand.

Lately I've been working on changing my mind frame. While I am strong and fit, advertised fitness plans don't work for me. I can't and shouldn't compare myself to others. (it's a good idea for everyone) just because everyone else goes to the gym for hours on end everyday doesn't mean that I should. Although I look like I should be able to, I cant, and I don't need to feel bad about this. While I don't look different than them, I am, and that's ok.

This month I caved and bought an expensive gym membership. The reason I use the word caved is because I already have a free gym membership to a comparable gym through my work. The only difference is the other gym has a pool. Having finally given up on conventional fitness plans, I've decided to create my own. One without a set schedule, guilt, or rigid goals. I am simply going to swim, or be in the water as many times a week as I can. Ideally twice a week for now. It's been pretty good so far. Its lovely to be relatively weightless for a bit. I push myself to stay in the water for 25-30 minutes at a time. Slowly swimming, treading water, stretching, and floating my way through the time. Im still fighting the thoughts that I'm not working hard enough as my joints sublex and my muscles spasm. Every time one of these thoughts pops up, I tell myself that I'm doing something good for my body, and that no matter how much I hate the idea of starting small it's the only way I can slowly work my way up. That it is the beginning of something that will make a big difference with my depression and pain levels.

So for now, in all areas in my live, my new mantra is "Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming"