By the end of June I was sounding like a broken record: “I feel so tired,” “I feel so out of shape.”
“I this…” and “I that… .” I was honestly starting to feel hopeless. My Hispanic circle of friends was in the same rut. The ending to most of our conversations spun around this theme. We probably went through the Spanish dictionary selecting words to describe our situation. Ay, ay, ay. Que triste.
And remember how I blogged a couple of months ago about loving your body the way it is? Well, don’t get me wrong. I still love my body, but I don’t love how it feels day in and day out. I tried encouraging my friends with this message, but you know when you’re not 100% convinced on what you believe, it is really difficult to convince others as well.
And then there was the food. Hispanic food is DELICIOUS, but we don’t always cook it the healthiest way. Refried beans (grain and fiber could be good for you) cooked, more like simmered, in fat (not good). Chicken breast tacos (lean mean cut on low-fat tortillas?) deep-fried (um, ok, you get the point). None of that was helping us. And let’s not talk about the poor-health legacy for our children!
When I had enough I said, “¡YA BASTA!” “ENOUGH!”
On July 5th I took matters in my own hands and started a walking/running/Zumba club. Seven of us (some family, some friends) started cheerfully walking 2 miles twice a week with a Zumba work-out one day each week. We are now on our third week. To give us a little bit more of encouragement we are using a Bible verse in Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 as our inspiration: “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”
Our group is now up to 15 people and growing. We now walk/jog up to 3 miles. We are located on the Northeast-Side (Lawrence) area in case you want to join us. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. We meet Mondays/Tuesdays at 6:30 pm and usually go to the Fort Benjamin trails for walking and Thursdays at my church for Zumba work-out. The best part is that even my children (and my friends’ children) are encouraged to do this, including the Zumba session.
How do I feel? Honestly, I feel beat up most of the time just because after having my baby back in September I now notice how out of shape I am. Actually my out-of-shapeness goes farther back than that, but it’s good to have something to blame it on. My knees hurt, my ankles hurt, EVERYTHING hurts. Even bones and muscles I didn’t know I had.
But at the same time, I feel good that I’m doing something good not only for me, but for my family and for my friends. And honestly I feel a little bit better with every day that goes by.
Starting my own walking club has been one of my goals for some time. It was easy to start (no gear or special place or equipment needed) just some self-motivation. My next goal is to train for the Geist 5K Run. Then it will be training for the Indy 500 Mini-Marathon.
I encourage you to set and obtain your goals also. But be realistic and don’t set yourself for failure. Start little and grow one step at a time. Start by setting out a small attainable goal, for example, a 20-minute walk three times a week, or no carbonated drinks for 30 days, no taking the elevator but going up the stairs instead. When you conquer that goal you will have enough self-confidence to challenge you to an even larger goal. Keep working your way up to your ultimate goal and celebrate your efforts with every milestone.
It’s a long road…but with small positive steps you too will get there.