Fumbling Towards Fitness

14 Dec

Every week I will be posting with BookieBoo about my adventures into fitness. If you have been keeping track of me you know that I am a fitness newbie. And yet, I was still asked to contribute at BookieBoo about fitness. How cool (or crazy) is that?!?!

My first post is about Walking. You can follow that link or just keep reading…

I have been on the path towards healthy living for a little over one year. Honestly, I walked into my first Weigh Watcher’s meeting because I wanted to lose weight. I wanted to be skinny but I had no idea how I was supposed to do that. Fast forward to today and I have lost 47 pound and I am eating better than I ever have eaten. However, food is not the only piece of the weight loss puzzle. The other “F” of healthy living, Fitness, is equally important on this journey. I am just learning all about fitness and I am NOT an expert by any stretch of the imagination!

I do not have a gym membership. I do not have a personal trainer. I do not have a Wii.

I have a constant need to learn. I have a treadmill. I have internet and google.

Walking was my first break into the world of fitness. I have a treadmill but it was sadly underused until last year. Last November, my doctor suggested surgery to repair a weak ligament in my ankle. My doctor wanted to schedule the surgery as soon as I could but I am a teacher and my classroom is on the top floor and the bathroom is on the bottom floor and did I mention there is no elevator. Can I be honest with you? Surgery scared the $&*# out of me!! I told the doc that I would have surgery after school was out for summer. I had already joined Weight Watchers and was making progress but I wanted to be lighter and in better shape if I was going to have surgery. I knew I had to be more active but I had no idea where to start.

I had a treadmill and I started using it! Man, was I slow! I only lasted 20 minutes! But I kept at it. I walked and walked and walked some more. I slowly built up to more time and faster speeds. Winter around here can be cold and wet so I stayed inside. I learned to love my time on my treadmill. I faced my treadmill to the TV and I watched episodes of General Hospital on the DVR while I walked. I walked because I know how to walk. There is no learning curve since I have been walking for 30ish years.

Seven months of walking later, I went back to my doctor for a pre-surgery check up where we would schedule my surgery. Doctor was very happy about the progress I had made with my ankle. I had built muscles in my legs and near my ankle, my ligament would always be weak, but the extra muscles I built were helping my ankle stay stable. When I told doc I felt “AWESOME” he was very happy. We decided that surgery was not necessary at this time. I was so happy because I did not want to stop progress. The surgery had a total healing time of 3 months – that is a lot of time to be out of commission.

I loved rotating treadmill walking with outside walking but July and August were mighty hot so I needed to find a new way to walk. A bit of googling and tweeting brought me to Leslie Sansone and Walk at Home. Using my DVD player, I walked in my very small living room. At first I felt silly walking in place in my living room but within 10 minutes I was sweating and breathing hard. I was walking in a new way and I loved it. I now rotate living room walking with treadmill walking and outside walking.

I am still on my journey to weight loss. I have more weight to lose. I am getting healthier but I am not all the way healthy. Walking has been my main source of fitness and it has been good to me! I have walked myself out of ankle surgery. I have walked myself 47 pounds lighter. I have walked my legs stronger. There are tons of benefits to walking for health.

From The American Heart Association (and the Start Walking campaign):

Walking Toward a Healthier You

There are countless physical activities out there, but walking has the lowest dropout rate of them all! It’s the simplest positive change you can make to effectively improve your heart health.

Research has shown that the benefits of walking and moderate physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day can help you:

* Reduce the risk of coronary heart disease
* Improve blood pressure and blood sugar levels
* Improve blood lipid profile
* Maintain body weight and lower the risk of obesity
* Enhance mental well being
* Reduce the risk of osteoporosis
* Reduce the risk of breast and colon cancer
* Reduce the risk of non-insulin dependent (type 2) diabetes

There really are so many benefits for such a simple activity!

Walking is a fantastic exercise and I enjoy it very much! But, I am ready to add something new.

I want to be stronger and I want to transform my mind and body. Stay tuned while I learn more about fitness! Every week, I will be back to share with you what I learn about fitness!
Together we can get fit!!

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One Response to “Fumbling Towards Fitness”

  1. Shannnon December 15, 2009 at 12:08 pm #

    Jen,
    You are so inspiring and I am excited for you. 47 pounds is huge and you should be very proud!
    I just love ya
    XO

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