An easy way to assess my motivation, specifically with healthy living (fitness and diet), is to look at how often I update the ol' blog.
As you can likely see now, my motivation as of late has been non-existent.
Honestly, I think the little 26.2-mile run I did last October really did me in. It consisted of six months of training, which entailed four days of running each week. Every Saturday morning, I spent anywhere from one hour to five hours running. While I loved (almost) every minute of it and am planning on participating in the program again, I just don't think I can do another full marathon. After crossing the finish line, I kicked my shoes into my closet and have touched them so few times since: I just needed a break.
Since January, I have been paying $40 a month to belong to the YMCA. Unfortunately, not even the automatic withdrawal from my checking account has been able to motivate me to get my workout on. Instead, I've done maybe three spin classes, have participated once in an awful cardio-kickboxing class, and have hopped on the treadmill maybe three additional times.
And, since the weather has been so wintery lately, I've only run outside a few times, and let's face it: the "runs" are usually more "vigorous walks."
Finally, although I went from working out like a crazy person and running at least 30 miles a week to running zero miles per week, my caloric intake did not change. In fact, I probably ate more - or at least more icky food - since I stopped training. As a result, I feel like I am currently at my absolute worst, and I am incredibly unhappy about this.
Clearly, something needs to change.
I have found that what motivates me the most to exercise is a group setting. In 2009, I participated in Farrell's eXtreme Bodyshaping, and that did wonders. I lost several inches, dropped body-fat percentage like crazy, and got super toned. I looked good.
Last year, I bought a LivingSocial for Max Life Fitness & Nutrition, and through their "bootcamp," saw the same results as I did with Farrell's. I also participated in CrossFit Primal, but since that was located way too far away and involved too much high-impact workout for this girl, I did not see the crazy results I had gotten with the other programs.
Over the past couple of weeks, I have given it a lot of thought and have decided that I again need some sort of kick in the butt (obviously) to get back in healthy mode. I thought long and hard about it - after all, it does cost nearly $400 - but I signed up for Farrell's this morning. A week from tomorrow, I will be running a mile, doing sit-ups and push-ups, and finding out all sorts of fun numbers, such as body-fat percentage, pounds, inches, etc. Oh, and I'll be posing for a photograph - in a bikini.
And for the ten weeks following that initial weigh-in and assessment, I will be doing kickboxing and resistance-training every other day at 5:00 a.m. (While I am supposed to do resistance training on Saturday mornings, I think I may skip that workout in order to go for longer runs, as I still want to run Dam-to-Dam, prepare for Market-to-Market, and not be in completely horrible shape when See-Us Run Des Moines starts.) In addition, I will be adhering to a strict healthy-eating regime that is both smart and, actually, manageable; in fact, it is the "diet" that I have referred back to over the past four years as I continue to urge myself to eat more healthfully.
I chose Farrell's over Max Life for a couple of reasons. First, it is much closer - in Beaverdale as opposed to far northwest in Urbandale. Second, while both gyms work with a team concept, it is much "stricter" with Farrell's: they strongly encourage you to attend the session for which you signed up (so I'll be at the 5:00 a.m. class every day as opposed to switching times due to my schedule), and they give each "team" a pair of coaches to help hold participants accountable. Third, one of my friends is currently participating in the 5:00 a.m. class. Finally, I have a chance to win $1,000. I believe I was quite close to winning the money during my first Farrell's stint, and I think that I am even more focused now; also, while I am currently at my heaviest, I was at my healthiest just a few months ago and believe I can get back to that point quite "easily" after getting back in the routine of healthy living.
So there we have it: starting on March 23rd, I will be a new woman. World, look out.