Here we are on Nov. 1st and I’ve decided to write about changing my eating habits and exercising while dealing with issues of inactivity for a while and old injury pains from a broken ankle and having no cartilage in my right knee. While I have been exercising and changing my eating habits over the last few months, it occurred to me that there are no blogs, guidelines, or any help for people who suffer from healed injury pain or those who are older than 35 who need to exercise and take better care of themselves either from an epiphany or doctor’s orders. All we are told is that we need to exercise but there is no account taken for the limits on what we can do except maybe for Richard Simmons.
Here’s the thing, no one understands better than us what are limitations are. You can go to the gym and get a trainer but if he doesn’t know or doesn’t understand that you can’t do jumping jacks right now because your knee will pop out of socket then you are stuck back where you were before, with a recurrent injury. So the first step in this process is…learn your limitations. By doing that, you can research exercises that you can do such as yoga, walking, hiking, biking, and even soft shoe tap dance. Yes, we can do all of that and most versions of those exercises are very low impact.
Now trust me, when you figure out what you can do you have to realize that you may only be able to do so much at a time. When I started a few months ago, all I could do was 15 minutes of any type of exercise before I had to stop because of the pain in my ankle. Now I’m up to about 45 minutes on a good day, 30 minutes on a bad day.
Then there is the mindset of “hurry and lose weight now or feel like a failure”. Just forget that out of your brain right now! If you lose weight too fast then two things happen, you have saggy skin and you WILL gain it back twice as fast if you don’t keep up with all the exercise you were doing. It took almost a month before I even saw the first pound drop off the scale and then that pound wanted to play pin pong, up and down. It took trying to discipline myself of not getting hurt when I didn’t see results because the older you get the slower your body will react to anything even exercise and food changes.
NEVER GIVE UP ON YOURSELF!!!
The key here is taking care of yourself and repairing damage already done, stop worrying about whether the pounds are coming off. I know, easier said than done. BUT…get in the mindset of “I’m going to start taking care of myself” even if its just baby steps. So take your dog or even your cat (yes, some cats can be walked on a leash, I’ve seen it) for a walk, even just 10 or 15 minutes a day. After a bit, you’ll want to do more and in my case the dog starts to tell you they want to go out. BABY STEPS, that all it takes to start it. Another baby step and this one has been punched into the ground a lot, try to cut back on fast food and make your own food. Notice I said cut back, this is because many love fast food but take it slow. I was able to cut it out cold turkey but some may have to wean themselves off of it because they love it. After a while you’ll discover you don’t want it all the time. Once fast food was out of my body for a couple months I didn’t want it anymore. The longer you go you also discover that those restaurants also start to give off bad smells. The point I’n trying to make is certain foods have chemicals in them that keep us overweight and unhealthy. The more you eat those foods, the hard time you have of losing weight and keeping it off especially the older you get.
I was just telling my guy today that I am really starting to hate this getting older stuff because my mind says “let’s go, let’go!!!” while my legs are say “what the hell, lady??!!!!” As a former dancer(the ballet kind), I can tell you that this hurts because I’m so used to being able to do what the mind says that when the legs are saying “hold up” it becomes a war between the two trying to figure out what I can do anymore. So instead of so-called fighting with myself, I start thinking about what I can do and start thinking about what exercises can be applied to that. I really should have studied fitness more but coulda, woulda, shoulda, you know?
So I’m leaving you with this today: know your limitations, adjust accordingly, and start taking care of yourself. Only you truly know what you can do to help you.
I’m going to start this as a weekly blog and see where it goes from there.
Until next week, may your stars shine bright and help the moon guide you through the darkness on this path…