Josh and I bought memberships to the local YMCA a few weeks ago, which has been one of the best decisions we’ve ever made. I know I’ve talked before about how I started running with him over the summer and that I took a bit of a hiatus when we moved in October, and I have FINALLY gotten back into it now that we’ve purchased memberships.
I have been spending most of my time running and strength training, but am actually tempted to try doing laps in the pool, too. I have NEVER been a swimmer. In high school gym class I failed the treading water test and pretended I had a freakish period and a tampon allergy (seriously) so I could sit out whenever I wanted. I hate being told what to do, especially when I am in the same class as the fucking swim team, so I’ve always hated swimming laps. However, the pool at the gym looks amazing, and swimming laps sounds like it might be worth trying at my own pace on days I don’t want to run. I might give it a try. I’ve even found some fitness swimsuits with boy shorts so my ass won’t be hangin’ out of the corners. I would like to find an eco-friendly fitness swimsuit, so if anyone knows of a brand that offers this, please holler.
OK, enough about workout clothes and my buttcheeks.
The really exciting stuff:
I have started to notice some changes over the past year in the way I look at fitness and my body. When I worked out at the gym in college, I was always concerned with losing weight and getting back to the ballet body I had in high school. I wasn’t concerned with time spent on the elliptical, strength, endurance, or anything other than calories. I went to the gym to lose weight and that was that.
Today, I work out and go to the gym because I like the way it makes me feel. Growing up as a dancer made me love the feeling of being sore after a good training session. I still dig that feeling, even when I wake up and can’t raise my arms. I like that it gives me more energy during the day and I love doing something that benefits from my progress. I don’t go to the gym today with a goal to drop 30 pounds by spring (although I wouldn’t complain if that happened). I go because I want to run a 5K by the summer, I want to run a marathon before I’m 30, and I want to feel myself getting stronger as I add more weight to the machines.
Still, I would like to drop some pounds. It’s not because I hate how I look or want to look like Jennifer Aniston (only a little) or refuse to wear a bikini until I reach ___ weight. It’s because carrying extra weight makes me physically uncomfortable. It might be because I work at home and spend most days freeballin’ in a pair of sweatpants, but I hate the feeling of extra belly fat suffocating me in certain kinds of pants, I hate the feeling of chafing thighs when I wear shorts, and carrying extra weight has made a HUGE difference in the things I can do.
It’s much harder to rely on my upper body strength when I have 40 pounds of unnecessary fat on me, even if my muscles are plenty strong. Overall, I’d like to see my body balance out a bit. Gain strength, lose fat, and maintain a healthy weight that does not hold me back or cause all this physical discomfort. My body image is and will be fine, and it makes me really happy to finally be able to say that.