I had been feeling a little defeated lately about having no energy and being out of shape. I’ve been thinking about it for months. So naturally, I waited until the very end of summer to decide I was going to challenge myself to follow a workout plan. I even planned to do it in August and then pushed it back thinking positive parenting was an easier challenge to stick to than this–and that is saying a lot!
I wanted this to be a story about how I successfully implemented just a few key exercises and made this lifestyle change for the better. It seemed so simple. But I failed. I totally, utterly failed at this challenge. And I honestly thought about either skipping this blog post or bullshitting my way through it, but in my pursuit of authenticity, here is my story of failure.
This wouldn’t have been one of those transformation stories anyway. I’m naturally slim, but growing, carrying, birthing, and nursing two kids really changes you. Things don’t sit where they used to. There’s a lot of “extra.” So I was looking for two main goals with my challenge: 1) to have more energy, and 2) to tighten things up a bit.
I needed to be realistic about my plan since I don’t have 60+ minutes to spare to get away from the kids/work for a class or a session at the gym basically ever. After stealing my parents’ elliptical that was collecting dust in their home gym, I made a plan to do at least 20 minutes of cardio three times per week and couple that with a (simple) 30-day HIIT workout challenge. It had to be something that would work my core and the region from stomach to hips (a.k.a. those post-baby bits), and it had to be 15 minutes or less or I knew it wasn’t going to happen. After perusing many options via Pinterest, I landed on one that seemed doable. A good search term if you’re in my boat is “lazy girl workout.” Seriously.
I chose the workout plan below for its full body workout and short time commitment. I did this workout exactly three times in the entire month. It wasn’t even hard so I totally kicked myself for failing so hard.
And the elliptical machine we took from my parents’ house? It has a much stiffer resistance than the ones I’m used to at the gym, so I was winded after 5 minutes. I stepped on that thing on seven separate occasions for a total of about 45 minutes.
In reality, I’m much lazier than I thought when it comes to getting up early in the morning to work out. And I’m too exhausted by the time the kids are in bed, school lunches are packed, dishes done, etc.
The only real motivation I had was a step challenge my office was doing, and out of sheer fear of being the worst on my team, I skated by with a very moderate step count. Luckily, our team had one ass-dragger so it didn’t take much for me to come in second to last. The most exercise I got was the day I took my daughter to Disneyland and walked nearly 17,000 steps. And that was due to my terrible ride planning so we walked back and forth all over the park.
I hate failing. What’s worse? Failing for lack of trying. I would have been happier to report that a month of moderate exercise did exactly nothing to lighten the scale or tighten some flabby parts. But I can’t say that because I didn’t even really try. I’ve started thinking about a more intensive workout plan that requires more accountability to get me back on track. I’m currently considering BBG or a barre or Pilates class. I thought I was self-motivated in this realm, but I guess not. Any success stories or tips to help a tired working mom get back in shape?