so it says on Page 1 of my running programme. Well, I have achieved the one goal I set for myself today; Run 1, Week 1 complete. Big tick. Let’s eat a bar of chocolate to celebrate. (Only joking)
The “run” was much harder than I thought it would be, part of me still in denial that I am now 3 1/2 stones heavier than I was 3 years ago when I was running 5k three times a week and enjoying it. Still, who is to say that this time next year I won’t be 3 1/2 stones lighter and running 5k three times a week and enjoying it? It has to be one step at a time and for those who are familiar with the Depression Alliance, their motto of “A journey of a thousand miles begins with single step” is inspirational when pounding away on the treadmill. Wise words indeed and one of the many mantras that kept me going through my 27 minutes of exercise.
27 minutes of exercise? That’s not even half an hour.
There was a time when I would laugh in the face of 27 minutes of exercise being an achievement. I would deride it as insignificant and a waste of time. Hah! I know different now and am much more tolerant and supportive of anyone who does any exercise for however long-good on them as I know what it’s like to haul yourself off the sofa and start something new.
………………………….I’m gonna find ya I’m gonna getcha getcha getcha getcha One way or another I’m gonna win ya I’m gonna getcha getcha getcha getcha”
For those who don’t recognise them, these are the lyrics to the Blondie song which is one of my favourite running tunes which have been languishing on my iPod for the past 4 years just waiting for me to get going again. The beat fits in with my short-arsed-little-strides perfectly and I find the aggressive tone of the music ideal for plodding on with my programme when I begin to flag (usually after the 5 minute warm up walk)
It’s a S.M.A.R.T goal. Nothing too drastic to begin with and I am determined not to try to do too much too soon as impatient as I am. This is important as I don’t want to jeopardise my current healthy, happy and stable mood by becoming over-tired. Exhaustion is dangerous and I need to temper my natural tendencies to over-exert myself with a more sensible approach. Like patience, sensible doesn’t appear in my dictionary but it’s good to learn new things and as a friend always says when she learns something new “I’ve got another wrinkle in my bum!” Don’t ask me where that saying originates, I have no idea but it always makes me laugh especially as I’m trying desperately to rid myself of all wrinkles in my bum!
As ever, my poppies are there to inspire me and I woke up this morning to find another bud had thrown off its wrappings to display this amazing sight.
I am such an impatient person. Once I get an idea in my head it has to be done YESTERDAY. My unwillingness to wait graciously for anything manifests itself in many ways, for instance; I can’t be bothered to plant seeds as they take too long to grow, (and yet I love watching my garden spring to life each year), cooking is an anathema, (Why spend hours lovingly preparing a meal when I can get instant gratification by eating a packet of chocolate biscuits) and dieting? well, I will be forever on a diet if I am to shift the excess weight that plagues me. I really want to start my running programme again but a 12 week programme seems an eternity. Having decided I want to run, I want to run 5k in 36 minutes TODAY……..
Sadly I know that this is unreasonable and I need to stop! think! and take each day at a time. No more looking ahead at “possible” results, I need to focus on the “real” achievements I can muster on a daily basis. So, a change in mindset is required (again). Regular readers of my Blog will have heard all this before and I apologise for the repetition and for being such a slow learner of life’s lessons but I’m getting there.
My plan of action, and I do have to have a plan, is to set myself a daily target which will increase the amount of exercise I do without setting myself unrealistic and unachievable goals. I need to be S.M.A.R.T.’er. I work long hours and travel a lot so any 12 week plan is likely to be derailed very quickly and I realise that I need to be more flexible in my approach and allow myself room for manoeuvre if I am to avoid “failure”.
Today’s goal: A 30 minute swim
Is this S.M.A.R.T?
I guess I could be more SPECIFIC and say I will swim 20 lengths in 30 minutes, but just getting in the pool will be achievement enough today. It is certainly MEASURABLE- as long as I remember to wear my glasses so that I can see the clock. Is it ACHIEVABLE? I’ve done it many times before and being a Pisces, swimming is the perfect exercise, so yes, it is achievable. REALISTIC? 30 minutes isn’t long and I don’t have to put in an Olympic qualifying time until next week and is it TIMELY?
“Mens sana in corpore sano”- ” Healthy body, healthy mind”
As part of my “back-on-track” initiative I had my first session with my personal trainer this morning and my goodness I can still feel the effects. Most of the session was taken up with an assessment of my flexibility and core strength and it didn’t matter how many times I told Kat she was evil and that her stop-watch counts the seconds much slower than mine she kept me working mercilessly.
The end result was that my flexibility is amazingly good but I need to work hard on my core strength to get up to scratch. As we were going through the results it dawned on me just how closely my emotional and mental health condition runs parallel with my physical state. Yes, I am very flexible in my approach to my depression and I try very hard not to accept the low mood as normal and am prepared to battle against it in any way I can. My core mental strength and resilience however is definitely lacking at the moment and the most minor hurdle in my way sends me running for the hills unable to cope.
So now with a combination of a mental health “trainer” providing me with help, support and exercises to improve my psychological state, and my sadistic personal trainer Kat helping me to get my body back into shape I’m hoping that I have taken a BIG step on the road to complete fitness.