Monday, January 11, 2010

Exercise and a Balanced Life

Exercise--there comes a point of dimishing returns with exercise. I had to make a decision how much of my life and energy I want to put into it. My blood pressure and pulse are excellent. My muscles are in good shape, my coordination has improved dramatically, I'm only going to try and lose a few more lbs, and I have a life.

I'm looking for balance in this area because its so easy for me to make an addiction out of exercise like I did with the food. I've done it before. It's ultra time-consuming and begins to rule my life. I don't want to go there anymore than I want to get back into the food.

I exercise between 30-60 minutes most days with 2 days off per week. Sometimes I'll walk longer on Saturdays, but during the winter that's enough. Summers I like to hike longer outdoors, but that's as much for pleasure as exercise as I enjoy being outdoors so much.

I'm not going to aggravate my arthritis working out much more than that. I'm not exercising that much more time than I did before weight loss; I've always walked as much as possible. Its just that I've added stair-climbing at work after I lost most of the weight, so I get a more intense workout. I'm also walking much faster and farther in the alotted time.

I think everyone's different and has to take into consideration where they're at physically and what their available time is. Actually, I think my weight loss has slowed down despite the increased intensity of the exercise because I'm replacing fat with muscle which weighs more. But my body is definitely still reshaping.

I'm really happy with my physical body. Not with the drooping wrinkled skin, but can't do anything about that. I'm just happy with how I look in clothes. I'm 5'9", 170 lbs, my pants are 12's and my tops are L's. That's normal. More normal than I ever hoped to be again.

My goal is to stay normal (not talking psychologically, LOL). I don't need to be skinny. I want to have a life with my grandchildren and children and be able to work to the best of my ability and have fun and be healthy.

I'm amazed at simple things like finding easier ways to get up from the ground. It was very difficult with two fake knees and its still not easy. Kneeling is extremely uncomfortable and with all the weight, gettting up from my butt meant I had to roll onto my knees, then push my butt up in the air and walk my feet towards my hands before full lift-off. Now I can roll onto my side while bringing one knee up and continue right into standing up without having to kneel first. Still a little awkward but getting better.

Being able to break my fall Saturday night and land like an athlete lands, without injury, that was incredible. These are the little things that make me happy. I still have to watch how I move, and how hard I move. It's very easy for me to over-extend or overwork my joints and spine and risk further injury. So I've learned the hard way to be careful with exercise and to be content with what I can do.

I am content, no matter what my circumstance.
I am content, no matter what my lot.
I know what it means to live in want or have plenty
I know the meaning of being content,
Is that I can do all things, through him that strengthens me.
Yes I can do all things, through him that strengthens me.