My fit life journey has shown me that there are 2 kinds of “getting comfortable” – 1 that you should do and 1 that you shouldn’t…
LET YOURSELF GET COMFORTABLE
Whether you’re going to the gym for the first time ever, going to a new gym, picking up exercise equipment after taking an “extended fitness vacation,” trying a new exercise class or routine, or anything else in between, it can be intimidating, to say to least. For me, it feels borderline terrifying. That experience of walking into a gym for the first time as a total stranger and getting all those looks that feel like everyone knows you’ve been vegging out on the couch for what feels like an eternity is enough to send me running for the hills (or rather, slouching back into the couch). Unfortunately, I did just that for a long time. One day though, I woke up and realized that a new gym or new fitness routine isn’t unlike anything else that’s new – it’s a change that requires getting used to.
The other day as I was pumping away at the gym, going from a great interval session on the elliptical to some much needed stretching on the mats in the middle of the weight room and then finally to a cool down walk and jog on the treadmill, I thought about how far I’ve come. The first time I walked up those stairs and into the gym, I felt more out of place than ever before. I wouldn’t stretch because I thought I was being watched and judged. I would rush through a 15-20 minute cardio session just to say I went to the gym. I didn’t pay any attention to what I was doing, my own goals and what I was there to accomplish. For what felt like weeks, I only did the elliptical because that’s what I felt comfortable doing. I would survey the scene – locating the weights I would go for when I felt ready (since I didn’t ever want to be that person wandering aimlessly around the weight area), watching people perform their exercises with confidence and ease (giving me the feeling that I could do the same), getting into the music blasting through my headphones and finding my “zone”…. ultimately, I was allowing myself to get comfortable. Now, everything has changed and I could care less what anyone else is doing at the gym. My mindset is ME, MY GOALS and MY PERFORMANCE!
The moral of the story is, don’t be too hard on yourself – give yourself time to feel comfortable with your new environment and allow yourself to make that step in the right direction for you and your fit life. We all have to start somewhere. Ladies, everyone is staring at you because you’re a sexy new woman to look at – Fellas, everyone is staring at you because you’re a sexy new man to look at. They’re also probably staring at you because they’ve BEEN THERE and they admire your ability to step up and start a new path! Feeling fat and too disgusting to show your face to the world, let alone inside a room full of gorgeous bodies? GOOD – That’s the whole damn point and should be your motivation!
YOU CAN DO IT.
Never ever forget that!
DON’T LET YOUR MUSCLES GET COMFORTABLE
We, as humans, adapt to an endless amount of circumstances, surroundings and situations. Muscles, as I’m sure you’ve heard, are no different. Whether you experience muscle adaptation by reaching a plateau and seeing stagnant results/changes or you feel like your muscles have adapted so much to lounging that you can’t seem to move your fat ass off the couch, it’s all a similar principle. In order to stay fit over time, we must must must change things up.Variety in exercise doesn’t just mean you’ll help prevent boredom, it also means you’ll improve your results. As we train our muscles to work harder and more efficiently, we’re also decreasing our resting heart rate and allowing our muscles to get comfortable. Ultimately, this means that we need to change things up to see results and feel the burn again – lift heavier, run farther, add more resistance, etc…
As most of you know, I’m a huge fan of changing things up, trying different workouts and setting new fitness goals. Most of the time, it’s because I get really bored, but it’s also hugely in part because my body responds well and I stable out really quickly. Right now, for instance, I juggle between a gym membership, running dates with friends, active adventures like Paddleboarding, classes at Classic Kickboxing, a variety of LivingSocial/Groupon/Bloomspot deals, and most consistently, Pure Barre classes. In all honesty, one of the reasons I’ve fallen so in love with Pure Barre Pasadena is because the exercises and routines are always changing – no matter how long I keep going, I never get bored and my muscles don’t get too comfortable. And before you even say “well, I can’t do that because it’s too expensive” – that is NOT true. You MOST CERTAINLY CAN exercise consistently and change things up without breaking the bank – run for free outside, find a community swimming pool, ask a friend who is really into another workout style to do a workout with you, take advantage of deals and discounts, and most of all, be creative!
The only thing stopping you right now is YOU, so get out there and get going! Yah… you… on the couch, reading this right now – you’ve reached your couch comfort level and it’s time to change things up! Again…
YOU CAN DO IT.
Never ever forget that!