Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Going It Alone

Always do what you are afraid to do. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Weight: 123# at home; 128# at the gym.

With permission from Emerson, I am doing a small thing that I'm a bit afraid to do: Today marks the first day of 3 months working out on my own.

I know many - in fact most - people work out by themselves. They get into the gym, they know which days they work on back or legs or shoulders. They have their routines. I'm not doing anything that remarkable when you look at it really.

I'm betting on myself. This break is a test for me that extends beyond workouts, beyond eating correctly, beyond physical stability. Besides getting physically lazy over the last few years (or decades?), I've gotten mentally lazy. I given up responsibility for my actions, I've slacked off. My goals for these three months are very specific:

Make 4 appointments with myself a week and honor them. No "it's too wet", "I'm too tired" or the universal "I have too much to do..." excuses to dishonor myself this way. Not anymore.

Mix things up. Take a couple group classes (yoga, aquacize, maybe even a power pump class); maybe visit a friend or two at their gyms and work out with them. Do something just a bit different. And maybe make a friend or two along the way, as this seems to be the way that women in the gyms build their social networks. By doing something a little different, I'll come back to training with a whole new perspective!

Don't let myself off easy. When I started working out, it was normal for me to quit an exercise early. I was bored, I was sore, I didn't like it. I could talk myself out of working every 5 minutes. This will be the real test of this quarter. When I plan to go to the gym, I write down a workout plan, including probable weight levels and goals for reps. I include one thing that I don't really like to do in each workout. For the next 3 months, it won't be Guido telling me that I can't quit yet; it will be me. And I'll be a stronger character for working through this.

When I shared this with Guido, he finally understood that I was choosing goals that could not be accomplished by working with him. He's endorsing my plan and will be standing on the sidelines still cheering me on. (He is, after all, still my corner man!) We'll check in with each other every couple weeks to make sure we're both OK.

With me within 10 pounds of my final weight loss goal, I'm fully expecting to reach it during this solo time. That will be another milestone.

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